As of the 1st July 2021 we began a new chapter in our 20-year story and officially became an employee-owned company.
We are now one of around 500+ companies in the UK to adopt the employee ownership trust model and just one of three market research companies to do so in the UK.
What is employee ownership?
The employee ownership (EO) model is an exciting, progressive way to structure our business, that holds benefits for everyone, including staff, our clients as well as suppliers and everybody else we work with.
An Employee Ownership Trust (EOT) has been set-up to hold shares in DJS Research for the benefit of our employees. It is managed by our Trustee Board that has to meet certain legal requirements and ensure that we are acting in the best interests of employees at all times. We are one of around 500 employee-owned companies using an EOT in the UK.
What are the benefits of employee ownership?
There are many benefits to being employee-owned. Employee-owned businesses have a good track record for productivity, innovation as well as being resilient and robust in times of economic turbulence.
Staff who have a stake and a say in employee-owned companies tend to be more entrepreneurial and committed to the company and its success, as well as happier, engaged and more productive. There are also benefits for clients, who are able to work with a company-owner at every stage.
Becoming employee-owned will also ensure that DJS Research will remain independent for many, many years, which is so important to us. Our legacy and company culture will be protected and our staff can enjoy the long-term security this offers, without the fear of being bought out by a competitor (as so often happens in the market research industry), and losing what makes DJS Research so unique; or it ceasing to exist at all.
Why have we decided to do this now?
Our company already shares many of the core principles of employee ownership, so moving from a family-owned business to an employee-owned company feels like a natural progression for DJS Research.
Our dedicated staff have made DJS Research the dynamic agency it is today and employee ownership will ensure the future of the company remains firmly in their hands. Becoming employee-owned makes a bold statement about the kind of company we are, and will continue to be well into the future.
Listening to staff even more
While we already listen to what our staff say through our internal MyDJS engagement surveys, our transition to employee ownership will build on this even further. Our new status will ensure that we go forward listening and engaging with our employees even more, and we expect this to reap dividends in terms of staff engagement and motivation.
Leadership changes at DJS Research
The company leadership will remain largely unchanged, however, Alasdair Gleed, who has been a DJS Research Board Director for more than 10 years, will take over the role of Managing Director, while company founder and current MD, Danny Sims, will move to a Chairman role.
Speaking about the transition to employee ownership, Danny said:
“We are so proud of the company we have created and how it has grown and evolved, and it’s really important that we protect its legacy and ensure it remains independent for many years to come. Employee ownership is a way to do this; it’s progressive and forward-thinking and offers a way to give back to our incredible and talented workforce who have made DJS Research everything it is today.”
“The company is going from strength-to-strength and our 20th anniversary is the perfect time to start our exciting new chapter. We will continue to listen to our staff even more than before and deliver excellent research, while showing our clients the value of an employee-owned company through everything we do.”
Jane Frost CBE, Chief Executive of the Market Research Society said:
“Structures like Employee Ownership very much reflect the way that society is moving. I believe that one of the key benefits is that a business model in which talent has such an important stake is one in which all the company are empowered to learn and act, a fundamental pillar of Intelligence Capital. Having met the team at DJS several times I feel sure they will make a huge success of this new departure and I wish them the best of luck.”
Deb Oxley OBE, Chief Executive of the Employee Ownership Association, which has been supporting DJS Research with the transition said:
“We congratulate DJS Research and its new employee owners; their move to employee ownership will sustain the values and independence of the business for the longer term.”
“Businesses that give employees a stake and a say build trust and shared responsibility, therefore uniting leaders and employees behind a common purpose. This leaves the business in a better position to flex and adapt for the future.”
Into the future...
As we move forward, we will be striving to live and breathe the principles of employee ownership, continuing to deliver excellent research and show our staff, clients and suppliers the value of an employee-owned company through everything we do.
If you have any questions about our new employee-owned status please don’t hesitate to get in touch to find out more. You can also get more information from the Employee Ownership Association who we have been working with and will continue to work with at every stage.