Chartered Insurance Institute  

CII chief defends body as staff lash out

CII chief defends body as staff lash out

The chief executive of the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) has defended the organisation after a series of negative reviews were posted on staff feedback website Glassdoor.

Sian Fisher, who was appointed chief executive of the CII in 2016, was singled out for some of the decisions she has taken in a number of the reviews on Glassdoor, which collectively gave the organisation a score of 1.9 stars out of five.

Among the reviews were complaints of "poor top-down communication" during the current change programme, "high turnover of staff" with people leaving "every week", "unhappy workforce leaving en masse" and the change programme, which involves "forcing people to do tons of extra work that is way outside their job description for no extra pay".

In response Ms Fisher attributed the discontent to the major change programme she is implementing in order to make the organisation more "modern, relevant and diverse".

She said: "I acknowledge that major change can be unsettling for people but I was brought in as chief executive by the board to bring change, modernise the CII and make it more relevant."

She also disputed the claims made in the reviews that there had been a large number of redundancies.

Ms Fisher said: "Following an independent review of the organisation by PWC, we have altered the structure and where there was duplication of roles, we have made logical strategic changes.

"There have not been wholesale redundancies and we continue to survey our staff to make sure they are engaged in the process and kept informed of proposed developments.

"Our transformation programme initially consisted of 14 workstream leaders from across the business with a mix of experience and seniority and they have done an incredible job to present their business cases to the executive team, which are now in the process of being implemented."

FTAdviser asked Ms Fisher to comment on the claims of high staff turnover, but she did not address this directly.

One of the other areas of criticism was the proposed sale of the CII's listed headquarters in the City of London, with one person accusing Ms Fisher of hating the building and being determined to move the organisation out of it "even if she has to make the business bankrupt to do it".

In response, Ms Fisher said: "The proposed sale of the our heritage building was announced early last year and we will be moving to a new location as Aldermanbury is not fit for a modern organisation.

"We have sold it to the City of London Corporation who intend to keep it as a heritage building, whilst still allowing us to use the hall for functions."

She added that the CII is "completely transparent" about how it uses its funds, which are set out in its annual report.

damian.fantato@ft.com