As 2022 draws to a close, it's time to reflect on another exciting and rewarding year that has seen Hippo grow our team, establish new partnerships and lay the foundation for an exciting 2023 and beyond.
These are only a few things that we are incredibly proud of, in addition to our team's continued hard work and passion for working on many projects and focus on delivering high-quality outcomes for our clients.
New Hippo herd members
The team has grown and evolved in all our locations in the UK, making it a hectic year for our recruitment team, who have hired over 100 new Hippos to be part of our wonderful herd. This has included developing our leadership team with key senior hires, including a new Design Portfolio Director and Client Director for Health.
We have expanded into new areas of Manchester, Bristol and London and increased our foothold in the midlands by recruiting in Birmingham as well as Coventry. The hires have been across all three of our portfolios, and we have expanded our senior team by bringing experienced professionals into business development and operations.
First-ever Hippo Academy
In January this year, we welcomed 25 new joiners to our Trainee Digital Consultant School as part of the launch of the Hippo Academy. The Hippo Academy focuses on helping all Hippos continue to build the right skills to enable them to have the career they aspire to at Hippo.
The Trainee Digital Consultant School is our opportunity to support those looking to move into the digital sector by introducing them to the tools and techniques needed to thrive in our work environments.
Building on existing skills, they participated in an eight-week programme followed by four weeks of mentoring to facilitate moves into roles such as User Researcher, Business Analyst and Content Design.
The course was such a success that we ran our second academy, which this time focused on User Research in September. Our Delivery Manager academy is due to start in January 2023.
School of code and growing the engineering and data portfolio
We have also agreed to sponsor the School of Code, which provides free intensive and flexible coding courses open to applicants from all backgrounds. We also had 5 School of Code graduates join us since becoming an employer Partner.
We deliver tech talks, have several Hippos who are part of their mentorship programme and host several local tech community events, including Splunk Yorkshire and Yorkshire Azure User Group. We also exclusively take on Consultant level developers through School of Code technical boot camps.
The engineering and data portfolio is the youngest part of Hippo but is also currently the fastest growing. Throughout 2022 we have hired 50 employees, and in November, the portfolio accounted for 35% of the total revenue of Hippo, which is a massive achievement.
Bristol away day
In September, we held our 2022 conference, which gave us a chance for the first time post-pandemic to get the 200+ Hippo herd together physically.
We decided to hold it in the home of the newest Hippo location in the city of Bristol; it was a day of team building and learning about the future of Hippo.
We've seen a lot of changes in the world and people's expectations since our inception in 2016, and we wanted our look and feel to represent our continued focus on user experience and reflect on our evidence-based human-centred approach as well as being able to deliver end-to-end services with our extensive growth in engineering and data capabilities.
Our new brand development was built on rigorous evidence, and research gathered from our customers and colleagues and leveraged our investment and commitment to deliver industry-leading user-centred design services.
We are extremely happy with the new brand direction. We feel that the new website and associated content really reflect the experience of Hippo.
Bristol tech festival
As the newest location for Hippo, what better way to announce ourselves to the area than being the headline sponsor of the festival that showcases all that is brilliant about the inclusive, collaborative and varied ecosystem that is Bristol Tech?
As headline sponsors, we got to showcase what Hippo is all about, not only helping our customers have a meaningful impact on people's lives but also having a little fun along the way and ensuring a culture that makes it a great place to work. It was amazing to showcase the raft of quality consultants we have on offer in this beautiful city.
We were delighted to win The Judges' Leadership award at the Northern Tech Awards. The awards highlight the leading technology businesses headquartered in the North of England, Scotland and Ireland.
This award, in particular, is judged on having the management team with the strongest vision and best leadership!
From the start of this year, to commemorate each person's Hippo work anniversary, we have been planting five trees per Hippo anniversary to help them positively impact the environment through more:trees.
We’re excited to have partnered with Octopus Electric Vehicles, offering a salary sacrifice scheme that makes electric cars affordable to our team while helping us work towards Hippo becoming a net-zero business by 2025.
We offered all our permanent employees an electric blanket to help the herd with the cost of living crisis and reduce energy use. Based on annual energy consumption/rates for the average UK household from Ofgem, using an electric blanket in winter months reduces energy consumption by 15%.
We continue to work towards our ambition of Net Zero by 2025, supported by our Green Hippos, who are focused on driving this agenda internally with our employees.
Hippo provides up to two days off per year, fully paid, for any of our employees who would like to take time off to volunteer for a charity or school or support an environmental activity of their choice. This year we have helped organisations such as Leeds Community Foundation, Otley 2030 and Hollybush Conservation Centre.
We have also introduced the ability for employees to donate directly to charity through payroll, working with GoodPAYE.
Expansion of our Flexible Benefits Scheme
At Hippo, we aim to go further and reward our people with some genuinely exceptional core benefits. In the run-up to 2022, we launched our flexible benefits scheme, which allows each Hippo to choose a variety of benefits that suit them personally. As 2022 comes to a close, we've taken feedback from our team. We offer an even wider range of benefits from January 2023, from healthcare and dental schemes to extra holidays, pension contributions, tree planting, charity donations and well-being.
Disability Confident Employer Scheme
We are working on driving our inclusivity agenda forward, so we're excited to join the government's Disability Confident Employer Scheme in July. We are aiming for Level 2 in 2023.
We have achieved two new ISO certifications this year - one for well-being (ISO 45003, officially called Psychological health and safety at work) and one around the environment (14001 Environmental Management). Both well-being and the environment are key focus areas for us, so we're very excited to have achieved this accreditation.
2022 has been a year of growth and change. The groundwork is laid for an exciting year in 2023, and the Hippo herd looks forward to the good we can do together.