Pickwick proudly values cultural diversity

As the proud cleaning contractor to clients like Brisbane City Council and Deakin University in Victoria we share their value of inclusion and embrace multiculturalism in our group. Pickwick has a truly international and multicultural workforce with staff from over 40 cultural backgrounds.

With such a variety of backgrounds, birthdays are made extra special, as experienced recently by Pickwick’s Deakin University Contracts Manager Manuel Neto, whose staff sang the birthday song in 5 different languages! “Memorable moments like this remind us of how fortunate we are to have such an inclusive and multicultural team,” Manuel said.

And this month in Brisbane given that many staff were on leave or doing extra shifts over the Christmas / New Year period, Scott Mackie, Pickwick’s Site Manager at Brisbane City Council’s Brisbane Square site decided to host a post-Christmas party on the weekend for his staff. Latin dancing was the order of the day after the BBQ lunch and an enjoyable time was had by all that attended.

As well as enjoying diverse cultural experiences, our employees believe they have a better understanding for co-workers from other cultural backgrounds and are more willing to co-operate with one another. Working in a multicultural environment has encouraged Pickwick staff to share a variety of opinions and expertise which inspires creativity and innovation.

Pickwick’s In-House Talent

At Pickwick we value communication. We are fortunate to have a large group of dedicated employees who come to us with excellent ideas that take our services to the next level. A good example is that of Shaminda Don who currently works for us at Deakin University’s Burwood campus. With an education background and working experiences in HR, ICT, and Business Information Technology in Sri Lanka, Shaminda came to Australia to pursue higher education in accounting and finance to enhance his knowledge and skills.

Under the guidance of Pickwick’s Contract Manager Manuel Neto, Shaminda has successfully led the design and implementation of a workflow management system, which has significantly increased the operational efficiency and communication effectiveness at the site level. The system operates on a free online platform that allows cleaners, supervisors and clients easy access via their mobile phone. During the first few months of trial there have been significant improvements in site operating processes, such as performance reporting, tracking and managing faults, requests and working progress.

Further to the workflow system Shaminda worked to create an online training module. Cleaners were required to complete knowledge tests on their mobile phones periodically. The tests include knowledge on waste management, proper use of vacuum cleaners, colour coding and emergency situations. Their results help identify staff who need further training. Feedback from our cleaners was good too. They found the applications fun to use and helpful in refreshing and updating their cleaning knowledge.

Currently Shaminda is working on two further projects. One is to optimise site stock management by using the workflow system and the other is to implement a security application that enables our cleaners to use mobile phones to report their locations in emergency situations.

Deakin University have spoken highly of Shaminda’s work. Pickwick is very proud of its in-house talent and we appreciate the dedication and innovation from employees like Shaminda. Tim Broatch, Pickwick’s Victorian State Manager said “Communication is the key. We receive many clever ideas from our staff and are more than happy to implement them. It’s amazing how much talent we have within our workforce from diverse cultures and educational backgrounds who are representing Pickwick every day.” Pickwick believes that to provide excellent services and develop long term customer partnerships we must constantly encourage our employees who possess both the technical skills and the passion to confront the challenges and make a difference.

Pickwick’s Poet in Residence celebrates Indigenous Australia

Local poet and Pickwick employee Mark Riordan has published a new book, Indigenous Australia. It is a look into the culture of Australia’s Indigenous citizens. Through poetry and original dot paintings the poems are brought to life and give the reader a glimpse of our ancestral heritage.

Notably last year, after composing a poem for Her Majesty’s 90th birthday, and sending his book The Poetry of Queensland, Mark received a very gracious letter and card from Her Majesty thanking him for his kind words.

Mark has been writing poetry for over 30 years and his numerous books represent the many unique passions and loves of his life.