The internet has made the lives of small business owners at once easier and harder. Thanks to large tech platforms, small businesses are easier for customers to find. However, by the same token, those small entrepreneurs’ lives are busier than ever with managing and updating their websites, online listings and customer communications.
Thryv Australia (formerly known as Sensis) has been working for years now to make small businesses easier to run and operate. It also operates a range of wellbeing, mentorship and flexible working practices that should be instructive to the rest of Australian companies — let alone those in the tech sector.
Earlier this year, it was recognised as an employer of choice at The Australian Business Awards and Elsie Balsillie, the head of Thryv Australia, has been telling WLT about its operations and its market-leading employee initiatives.
WLT: What services does Thryv offer its clients and who are your clients?
Elsie Balsillie: Thryv is an all-in-one business software platform designed to help small businesses reduce their paperwork and admin time, keep track of their customer relationships, and make them easier to do business with. Our clients are small-to-medium businesses from all kinds of industries, such as trades, medical, accounting and home services.
WLT: Does your approach to employee wellbeing and flexible working help you attract and retain tech talent?
EB: Our “work from anywhere” policy helps us provide a healthy work-life balance, which helps us attract and retain top tech talent from across Australia.
WLT: What goes into your mentorship and leadership programs and how successful have they proven to be?
EB: To help build a strong leadership team, Thryv hosts a highly effective Emerging Leader program that, over the past two years, has been rolled out to all parts of the company. With nearly 200 participants successfully completing the extensive training program, Thryv is building a bench of future leaders as opportunities arise. Thryv also has an official Mentoring program that exists to aid professional growth and development, whilst increasing communication and collaboration across Australia, New Zealand and the United States.
WLT: How does the Health and Wellbeing Committee work and what initiatives has it put into place?
EB: Thryv’s Health and Wellbeing Committee (HAWC), consists of company individuals passionate about the wellbeing of their valued community of workers. This committee is entirely made up of staff members, and brings a range of initiatives designed to help improve overall health and wellbeing both in the workplace and out. HAWC’s mission is to connect, educate and empower 100 per cent of our employees towards a greater state of health and wellbeing, encouraging and “educating on” positive lifestyle habits, providing motivation and offering ongoing support to ensure a successful work-life balance.
WLT: What was it like being recognised as an Employer of Choice?
EB: It was a hugely validating experience for us. Our people are the heart of our company, and as an organisation, we understand this and invest heavily in their growth and wellbeing.
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