People are at the heart of our business. We recruit bright, committed individuals and support them to fulfil their potential.
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Life at The Key
The Key could be your opportunity to make a profound difference to the working lives of 100,000 school leaders and governors, and others across the education sector. We are a team of socially conscious, passionate people, who are all motivated to do something incredible.
All our people have different skills and experiences, but we’re bound by two common characteristics:
- Our commitment to improving the lives of young people
- Our personal determination to learn and improve
The Key blends the very best of the private and public sectors: our organisation is growing quickly, fast-paced and opportunity-rich, but we are led by our values, and our steep ambition for school leaders, education professionals and young people.
An employee focus
Our people are amazing, so we treat them that way.
- We encourage a healthy work life balance, because people need time to bake, dance, spend time with loved ones and be awesome
- We offer a month’s sabbatical after 5 years’ service, so our people get the break they’ve earned and can do something memorable
- We offer 22 days' annual leave (plus bank holidays), increasing to 25 days after one year of service
- We encourage people to take part in the contributory pension scheme
- We are really into cycling, so we help our people to save on the cost of buying bikes
- We provide cereal and fruit at breakfast and drinks throughout the day, so we’re all well-fuelled
- We offer a discounted gym membership so our people can be healthy, happy and really buff
A friendly, sociable culture
The Key’s employee retention is high because we really like working together. We have lots of social space in the office, and use it to spend time together: on Fridays at 4.30 we down tools and have a beer or glass of wine; when birthdays come around we are serious about baking cakes and awkward singing; we have a yoga class that runs from the office each week; we have football and netball teams that quietly get on with their business until they actually win; we have clothes swaps, book clubs and seize every opportunity to celebrate. We also have loads of regular social opportunities beyond the office over the course of the year.
A commitment to professional development
We are passionate about professional development, and fiercely meritocratic. We are much more interested in finding and making the most of people’s talent than honing in on weaknesses.
There is an intense rhythm to performance management at The Key. Everyone meets with their line manager regularly, gets loads of (really constructive) feedback from team mates, has twice-yearly performance reviews and enjoys lots of opportunities to progress in-role, in-team, or in another area of the business.
We really encourage people to:
- Attend education seminars, conferences, and visit schools
- Make the very most of regular training and coaching sessions
- Attend keynote speeches from politicians and leading voices in the sector, who visit our office
- Get better at what they do every single day
We trust our people, and in doing so, we expect them to be innovative, autonomous and curious about new ways of working. Each individual in the company has the opportunity to take a ‘hack day’ – a day’s head space to be creative, or try to solve a problem. We have a culture where people are expected to be imaginative and bold: we act on ideas, and if they don’t work, we’re open and objective about what went wrong.
A socially conscious company
The Key operates ethically, sustainably and responsibly, and we want employees to be proud of where they work. We achieve this by:
- Celebrating the positive impact of our work in schools and the communities they serve
- Providing work experience for students, giving staff volunteering opportunities, and supporting a charity (National Literacy Trust) - see our CSR policy
- Encouraging employees to become school governors, and providing 4 extra days of annual leave for governor duties
People are at the heart of our business. Find out more about the talented people behind our services.
Come and join our company.
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The Key has been ranked 85th in Britain’s 100 fastest-growing companies in 2015 by The Sunday Times Fast Track 100.
Virgin’s Fast Track 100 programme has been identifying the country’s most successful private companies and ranking them in league tables since 1997.