UNW’s focus on people worth its weight in gold

UNW news /  30 January 2023

UNW’s continuing commitment to developing its people has once again been recognised with the prestigious Investors in People (IIP) Gold status.

This is the fourth consecutive occasion the Newcastle-based independent chartered accountancy and business advisory firm has achieved the ‘Gold’ standard since its initial accreditation more than ten years ago.

Investors in People is a national organisation that encourages businesses across the UK to invest in their people. To achieve the accreditation, companies must take part in a rigorous assessment process which involves a detailed review by the assessor, an all-employee survey, and focused interviews with a large sample of employees.

UNW, which employs almost 160 people at its Newcastle city centre offices, was first awarded the ‘Gold’ standard in 2012 and has retained the status following three subsequent reviews, despite the framework evolving and accreditation becoming significantly harder to achieve.

Reflecting UNW’s unrelenting commitment to investing in its people to ensure its clients continue to benefit from both technical and service excellence, the reaccreditation comes in the wake of sustained success across all areas of the business.

The firm’s independent status together with its quality, size and ethos make it unique within the North East and this attracted a number of senior appointments in 2022, including Chris Wilson who joined UNW as partner and head of corporate finance following 18 years at KPMG, Martin Cross who arrived as audit and assurance partner after almost two decades at PwC, and Nick Broadhead who joined as corporate finance partner from KPMG.

At the other end of the career spectrum, UNW also continued its highly successful graduate and apprenticeship programmes by taking on 20 new trainees in the last year.

Steve Lant, Tax Partner at UNW, said: “An Investors in People accreditation is sought by many businesses and the gold status is awarded to only a small proportion of those organisations, so it is something we can all be very proud of. To have held gold status for over ten years now is testament to our determination to making UNW a great place to work and developing our colleagues. Creating a fulfilling, enjoyable and rewarding working environment is incredibly important to us.

“We have never viewed the Investors in People accreditation as an end in itself. Quite the opposite; we have always sought to invest in our people in a variety of ways and taken the view that if we are doing the right things, the accreditation will follow.”