Verve, a Credit Union, was recognized by U.S. workplace consulting and research firm Gallup as one of 39 top workplaces in the world, earning a spot on the prestigious, invitation-only 2021 Gallup Exceptional Workplace list. Verve is one of only four credit unions to make the list, and one of three Wisconsin organizations (CESA 6 and Quartz).
According to Gallup, the world's top-performing companies help lead the global economy by engaging their workforces. These companies understand that employee engagement is a force that drives real business outcomes.
To be eligible for the Gallup Exceptional Workplace Award, organizations must administer Gallup’s Q12 employee engagement survey (2021 awards are based on Q12 administrations conducted between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31, 2020). They must also meet the following rigorous criteria: at least 50 respondents, overall Grand Mean of 4.40 or higher on a 5-point scale, participation rate of 80% or higher, and the ability to link engagement with business outcomes and local-level engagement data (if available).
“In the last 9 years serving as CEO, I have seen our team respond so positively to a culture-based vision. The best cultures are self-regulating and it's an honor to see the team take this philosophy on in their daily life,” said Kevin J. Ralofsky, president and CEO of Verve. “It's amazing to see our team members thrive in such adverse and challenging circumstances—those related specifically to the FinTech industry and those brought on by the pandemic. It's a thrill to be recognized on such a prominent global stage for the care and concern we show our team.”
In 2020, Verve pivoted its operations to limited branch access and primarily virtual interactions among non-member facing team members, with health and safety a top priority throughout the pandemic. Yet, even with these and other challenges, the engagement level among Gallup Exceptional Workplace Award winners is 73%, based on Q12 employee engagement surveys administered between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31, 2020. On average, these 39 world-class organizations have 18.3 engaged employees for every one actively disengaged employee—seven times the U.S. average and 14 times the global average.
“From the moment you walk into Verve, you can feel how different it is to work here,” said Karrie Drobnick, chief marketing + strategy officer at Verve. “Team member engagement and empowerment begins with our talent management efforts and is a strategic priority infused throughout every area of the organization. Each decision we make is examined through the lens of how it will impact the team and our culture. Clear, consistent communication of our values and vision is at the heart of our strategy. Every team member stands behind this philosophy and it shows in our teamwork, our service to members and now through this elite honor.”
Verve’s culture is grown through a robust recruitment and onboarding process, as well as continuous access to training and development opportunities and a host of health and wellness resources for its 320 team members.
Verve’s application highlighted its culture tools that drive engagement at Verve, which include a servant leadership culture, monthly coaching conversations, strengths coaching, emotional intelligence training, wellness program, company intranet and podcast, and unique benefits like having your birthday off and pet bereavement leave. The application also focused on three key events that impacted Verve in 2020: acquiring a bank in Chicago and welcoming the new team members, responding to the COVID-19 pandemic and team member agility in ensuring the success of a strategic project.
Founded in 1937, Verve, a Credit Union, is a member-owned, not-for-profit financial cooperative with nearly $1.5 billion in assets and serves nearly 66,000 members at 21 locations. Membership is open to anyone who lives, works or worships in 25 counties throughout Wisconsin, Illinois and Minnesota and to employees of Kimberly-Clark Corp., Fox River Paper Co., the medical services industry and the immediate family of any current member. Federally insured by NCUA.