Go Awards: Excellence in Public Procurement

Cadence Innova was a finalist from over 200 entrants from across the UK who entered competing for the chance to showcase their organisation’s achievements on a national level.

Cadence Innova was singled out for its innovative approach to the traditional procurement consultancy model. The submission for the award was in the name of our client, Public Health England (PHE), where PHE appointed Cadence Innova to help deliver its procurement shortfall using a surge capacity model that Cadence calls Procurement as a Service.

Cadence wins the Inspiring Leadership Team Award

Award trophy - In 2018 Cadence Wins Inspiring Leadership Award

In December 2018, Cadence Innova won the Inspiring Leadership Team award at the 2018 Inspiring Leadership Trust’s annual dinner and awards.

The Inspiring Leadership Awards recognises business leaders for the positive, sustainable impact they have on their employees, organisations and communities as a whole. The Inspiring Leadership Trust, an organisation that mobilises inspiring leaders to empower women and girls to achieve their full potential, has identified 8 components of Inspiring Leadership. 

The winners of the awards have demonstrated they are part of an elite group where they consistently deliver across all components. 

Cadence’s Leadership Team was recognised for building a successful start-up, achieving fast paced growth with a profitable £12m turnover and unique culture to the management consulting world. 

Cadence’s directors said: “The Inspiring Leadership Trust does amazing work in the UK and abroad, working with women and girls from severely disadvantaged backgrounds and circumstances, transforming lives through intensive support, development and coaching.  It is a cause that’s highly congruent with our values and purpose, so to be recognised by them is an honour” 

Jane Barret, co-founder and partner at Cadence Innova, receives the Inspiring Leadership Team Award

Read about the awards here.

More information about the Inspiring Leadership Trust’s Vision can be found here.

DNA of a successful corporate entrepreneur

Composite Hand and DNS symbol

One of the paradigm-shaping concepts we believe will impact the future of work is corporate entrepreneurship, where individuals inside an organisation display the same entrepreneurial traits as were originally employed in launching the business. 

These traits, described by Forbes Magazine in 2014 as the “identification and creation of an opportunity, marshalling the resources and providing leadership to create social or economic value” can be realistically instilled in employees, so long as an entrepreneurial culture exists – one where freedom and responsibility are equally valued, and practised.

While the traditional entrepreneur may set the organisational culture, the corporate entrepreneur is a member of a wider ecosystem. He or she needs to carefully balance independence and innovation with corporate citizenship. Too little of the former could result in wasted opportunities and personal frustration; but too little of the latter could give the impression of being disruptive—or worse, destructive.

The successful corporate entrepreneur has a natural aptitude for creating win/win situations.

The successful corporate entrepreneur has a natural aptitude for creating win/win situations. They’re adept at gaining the trust of others – both in their own and client organisations. There is a political astuteness that defines the corporate entrepreneur. They have a distinct ability to navigate the hierarchy and make an impression on the key influencers within their own and client organisations. They build networks and supporters through proactively identifying, engaging and converting the sceptics. They are self-aware and focused, whilst being able to adapt to challenging environments.

The corporate entrepreneur acknowledges that ‘selling’ is not simply about the product or service being sold. It is about working with the client or colleague to articulate a vision, moving the dialogue away from commodity and price towards service and value. In the client context, they become the go-to partner, trusted to achieve results and deliver value. In their own organisation, they play an active role in keeping up momentum, driving innovation through respectfully challenging the status quo and continually recognising opportunities.

In this age of disruptive innovation, corporate entrepreneurship enables organisations to remain relevant and keep one step ahead of the curve.

Contact Hatty: Hatty.Richmond@cadenceinnova.com

Why financial well-being is important to your organisation

Financial well-being is a critical part of well-being but is often overlooked by organisations. 

Why is financial wellbeing important to your organisation?

At least 1 in 10 people struggle financially but keeps it private. 

People with financial worries say their work and productivity is suffering. Many turn to payday lenders or work second jobs. 

They are more likely to look for slightly better paid jobs elsewhere, costing you more money to replace them and train replacements.

People don’t leave their financial worries at the door when they arrive at work. The impact on the workplace is significant. Lost productivity as a result of employees worrying about their finances impacts the bottom line by 4%. You may be surprised to know that almost half of your employees worry about their finances and for 1 in 5 these worries are significant enough to cause sleep deprivation.

Don’t get left behind. We can help you help your employees to take the first steps toward better financial lives.

Helping employees to address their financial concerns can also help with employee engagement. Employees tell us that they would value broader financial guidance, debt management and counselling if they were in financial hardship. 38% of employees say they would move to a company that prioritised financial wellness.

Don’t get left behind. We can help you help your employees to take the first steps toward better financial lives. There are many models that work. The common thread between all of them is that their success is measured.

Many people don’t want to answer detailed questions that pry into their personal lives. We take a different approach. We measure how employees and participants feel about their finances. Across 70 countries, our survey and scale have been used to help organisations and empower their employees to take charge of their financial wellbeing. The results speak for themselves. They show improvement in workplace productivity, higher employee and community morale and greater loyalty.

Find out more. Contact john.hoffmire@cadenceinnova.com or hatty.richmond@cadenceinnova.com

The unexpected benefits of Sprinting

At Cadence Innova we have fully embraced agile ways of working and the practice of working in sprints. There was method behind this evolution. We expected it to increase efficiency, help us deliver smarter and faster and help our clients save effort and money. This has all gone to plan. Perhaps what we didn’t expect is that we would enjoy it quite so much.

No idea is a bad idea. We are encouraged to share our thoughts. Sometimes from the most outrageous or funny suggestion an idea is born that turns into an innovative solution for a customer.

So why are we enjoying working in sprints so much?

We are united – Nobody wants to sit at an isolated desk all day after a morning commute and then travel home again, having only communicated with others in formal meetings. That’s why we’ve replaced the solitary desks with project tables. The project table is a vibrant and happy place to work. We share ideas, stories, food and anything else going. We help each other through difficult tasks. Because nobody wants to struggle with a difficult task alone. 

We have a voice – Nobody has to wait to be invited to a formal meeting to find out what’s going on and to offer an opinion. Everyone is kept in the know and on the same page at all times. 
We can express our crazy ideas and no idea is a bad idea. We are encouraged to share our thoughts. Sometimes an idea can be born from the most outrageous or funny suggestion, then grow into an innovative solution for a customer. 

There is no hierarchy – Of course we have our individual roles, but this is real teamwork at its best, with shared responsibility and accountability. Nobody has to worry about being wrong; we will all work to make it right. 

We work together and celebrate when we get there – We constantly discuss our common goals so there is no opportunity for people to go off track. We are one team heading in one direction with one goal in mind. And when we get there we celebrate together and enjoy the success. 

The walls are colourful – Gone are the grey walls. Our office is covered in post it notes, diagrams, ideas, drawings and random thoughts. It helps breed creativity and brightens up the day. 

So, for me anyway, there is no going back. For team well-being and productive working – try sprinting.

Contact Elaine at Elaine.Griffin@cadenceinnova.com

Barriers to innovation

Remember the days when you were a fledgling start-up company?

Every day was about creativity and innovation. You employed bright, innovative people. Your goals were to identify a problem and create an interesting solution. Your passion was to think out of the box and be recognised as an Innovator, to bring something new to the market. Profit was a goal on the horizon but the real, everyday goals were getting new products and services off the ground. Each great customer review was a small win, because you knew that meant you were heading in the right direction.

Today you are a big successful company. Your only measure of success is profit. Customers are quantified, expected rather than valued. You no longer take risks because now there’s a risk of letting the shareholders down. Your employees no longer feel free to share their creativity and ideas. The entrepreneurial culture has dissipated, which means you no longer attract the bright innovators.

Where did you lose the edge? And what happened to Innovation?

Governance, bureaucracy and a focus on profitability may have changed your company’s DNA. Blinkered by the bottom line, you can’t see beyond your successful product, brand or line. Your goal is to continue as you are while increasing efficiencies and reducing costs. Your success may not last long.

Bring in new people that are willing to help you think outside the box

How do you gain back your edge? You need a fresh perspective. Bring in new people, or get a kick start from a consultancy that is willing to help you think outside the box, shake things up and embrace the unconventional thinking that led to your initial success.

Continue riding the wave of success but build on it with fresh ideas so it doesn’t come crashing down. Expand your brand to other products or services. Think like a brand-new customer. Attract different thinkers. Take risks.

Don’t get stale, get creative.

Contact Elaine Griffin or Kirsty Auchincloss:
Elaine.Griffin@cadenceinnova.com or Kirsty.Auchincloss@cadenceinnova.com

The benefits of reducing the Gender Pay Gap

How doing it can help organisations maximise employee engagement, create a happier work environment and increase profit?

The Gender Pay Gap is a measure of the difference between men’s and women’s average hourly earnings across an organisation or the labour market and it is expressed as a percentage of men’s earnings.​ It exposes how men and women are positioned from the lowest to the highest paid roles in a company​. A pay gap in favour of men is usually explained by more men employed in higher paid jobs, and more women employed in lower paid jobs. E.g. In most airlines the majority of pilots are male, resulting in a large pay gap in favour of men (median pay gap at 9.7%)​. It is important to note that no company is the same. 

Individual organisations will have different causes contributing to their pay gap, but they are most commonly linked to:​

  • Access and attitude to flexible working and parental leave​
  • Societal expectations of gender roles​
  • Progression opportunities​


Collaborating with the Government Equalities Office, Cadence has helped build the web services needed by employers to report their gender pay gap data. If you would like to explore this data – click here.

Why reducing the Gender Pay Gap is a good thing?

Although many businesses are worried about reporting their findings, and how this will affect their brand reputation, sharing actions towards a GPG reduction enables organisations to differentiate themselves and capitalise on being a transparent and fair workplaces. This is also the case for  smaller companies who are not legally obliged to report on their gender pay. Some other benefits reducing the gap are:

  • It can raise staff morale:  this supports recruitment and retention;
  • It can decrease the number of uncomfortable pay-related conversations during personal reviews;
  • Hiring the best talent will become markedly easier. It will make it clear to new candidates that they’re entering a world of fairer opportunities;
  • When it comes to remuneration, HR teams will be spared the unsavoury task of dealing with gender inequality

Show your positive actions! Research shows that taking steps to increase gender representation, diversity and inclusion brings a whole raft of further business advantages with it. A growing body of research finds that the more diverse a company is, the greater its employee engagement, retention, productivity and profit rates are.

A good example of this is the French multinational firm Sodexo. It studied its workforce and presented data from 50,000 managers across 70 entities worldwide. It showed that teams with a male/female ratio of 40% – 60% produce more sustained and predictable results than unbalanced ones.

The Gender Pay Gap ≠ Equal Pay

The Gender Pay Gap is often mistakenly and unknowingly conflated with Equal Pay. This has negative consequence, as it allows people to shrug off the issue​. Equal Pay is where men and women are paid the same amount for doing the same work. To do otherwise is illegal. Conflating the Gender Pay Gap with Equal Pay is problematic as it allows people to assume an organisation they run or are employed by does not have a gender issue, as long as they pay men and women equally for the same roles​.

How can you improve the gender pay gap in your organisation?

Gender balance is not a diversity issue as women constitute 50% of every other dimension of diversity. By continuing to focus on this, we sadly categorise women to what they are not: a minority among many to be “managed. Organisations need to move the emphasis away from “helping” or “fixing” women. The gender pay gap is not a women’s but a business’ matter. To make progress, we need to frame the issue in a way that it fosters a culture of change.

Success in this area comes when combining powerful business process:

  • Training needs to be combined with assigned responsibilities for compliance
  • People need to be aware, but also experience change
  • Mentoring needs to come with real sponsorship (opening doors, making people shine also in their absence!);
  • No awareness workshops, without increased and measurable access to opportunities

How can Cadence Innova help you?

During a recent training session Cadence ran for Women in Social Finance network, we invited Hackney’s Employment, skills and human resources Councillor Carole Williams. She discussed how understanding the gender pay gap helped Hackney adopt an inclusive approach to equality – looking beyond gender. They have a wide range of equality initiatives, including a parental leave policy and many employment programmes they run as a council.

Every change is dependent to the subtleties of your business context. There is no one size fits all approach. As Cadence understands local government and political issues, the systems and the complexity of communities we can provide technical and leadership support at the intersection of these worlds.

Do not hesitate to contact us if you have any question and you want to know how working to reduce the GPG can generate gender smart investments, impactful business processes and a happy & productive team!

Email us: challenge.us@cadenceinnova.com