Acquity Group, a brand e-commerce and digital marketing firm, boasts work responsibilities that are just as vibrant and innovative as the Gen Y staffers that they hire. Executive Vice President Jim Newman says that the firm offers an innovative and exciting culture where ideas can be voiced and suggestions can be incorporated into policies.
Newman says, “I think in many different ways, Generation Y workers are our future leaders in the organization. We have a campus recruiting program every year where we hire individuals right out of school to learn the skills of our trade. We give them opportunities to lead projects early on.”
Acquity Group’s campus recruiting program is very specific towards the kinds of employees that they think will fit best with the company and its mission. It is for this reason that many young professionals hired straight out of college continue to grow with the agency and end up begin promoted time and time again. This mutually beneficial relationship between Acquity Group and its recent college graduates lends itself to the company’s high retention rate.
“We’re very interested in finding top talent and finding people that are passionate about technology. We believe that it’s very important to actively recruit from the schools we target to get the type of experience and background that we think will be a good fit with Acquity Group. We’re building our brand at those schools to attract the top talent. There are certain principles we found to be very valuable to the work that we do,” explains Newman.
Regardless of how they’re hired on to the Acquity Group team, all employees can enjoy an open work environment that the agency provides. Everyone can enjoy a view of the city, no matter where their desk is located because there are no offices located along the perimeter of the space. As a matter of fact, there are very few individual offices in the workspace, allowing for open communication and collaboration.
Newman adds, “We don’t set up artificial boundaries, so everything is very integrated. There are no walls to break down, so to speak. There are very open and really nice cafes that people can congregate around and a bar to promote a more casual atmosphere. It has an agency feel, warm and inviting.”
Along with a physically open space is an open door policy of which all employees are encouraged to take advantage. Every door is left open, even the CEO’s. Upper management goes out of their way to make sure that they are communicating with everyone at all levels of the organization. Everyone can have their opinions heard whether it’s through a dialogue, Acquity Group’s micro blogging network, newsletters or in meetings. These opinions aren’t just relative to assignments and office structure; employees are responsible for voicing the direction they’d like to see their career take.
“Our whole idea is based off of initiative and drive for our employees. You can direct your career in a track that you’re passionate about. Our promotion process is based off of initiative. Individuals have to initiate the process, complete a promotion nomination form and prepare a business case as to why they should be promoted. From there, leadership will review and understand whether or not an individual is ready for a promotion,” notes Newman.
It goes without saying that Generation Y employees who begin their career with Acquity Group have the opportunity to control their future with the company. Employees are empowered to reach their maximum potential and they are given the resources to do so. It is for this reason that Acquity Group is deserving of being ranked on Brill Street + Company’s “2011 Top 50 Chicago Generation Y Employers” list.