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Worker happiness at BC gambling corporation depends on position

Ask people working at the B.C. Lottery Corporation whether they have confidence in decisions made by senior leadership, and every single member of the top echelon President and Executive Assistance Division strongly agrees -- but it’s a whole different picture in the Lottery Development Department, where less than one in four staffers was as complimentary.

That’s one of the findings to emerge from a staff survey taken early in 2010, before BCLC began its internet gambling activity. While many employees of the B.C. Lottery Corporation are happy with the company’s decisions, others in the interior and on Vancouver Island are less so.

“An impressive response rate and positive overall results are registered,” said the report’s summary. “Still, very favourable ratings . . . tend to be slightly down compared to 2009. In addition, satisfaction with training and career progression has significantly dropped in the past year.”

Asked why there would be a marked difference by region when it comes to employee satisfaction, BCLC spokesperson Seumas Gordon gave this answer to The Tyee:

“All participants in the survey are unique, and levels of engagement may be impacted based on the nature of work, personal interactions, physical environment, workload, etc. We conduct these annual engagement surveys to measure the success of our corporate goals, identify best practices and improve on areas that are critical to employee engagement.”

All 880 company employees were invited to participate in the online survey, and 85 per cent of them did. BCLC has 68 different department and divisions noted in the survey, each with its own scorecard.

The tables below show the ten most apparently disheartened BCLC departments in each of three categories.

(The percentage figure refers to those who “Strongly Agreed” or “Somewhat Agreed” to the questions. “BU” refers to Business Unit. “Lower Mainland Department" refers to groups of field staff focused on gaming facility operations in and around the lower mainland.)

"Confidence in Decisions made by Senior Leadership"

72 per cent average across BCLC in 2010
President & Executive Assistance Div. 100 per cent
Lottery Development Department 23 per cent
Corporate Services BU 45 per cent
Technology Integration Department 46 per cent
Interior Department 47 per cent
Vancouver Island Department 50 per cent
Corporate Finance Department 50 per cent
Player Services BU 50 per cent
Lower Mainland #3 Department 50 per cent
Lower Mainland #1 Department 54 per cent
Lottery Systems BU 54 per cent


“High Department Morale”
72 per cent average across BCLC in 2010

President & Executive Assistance Div.

82 per cent

Corporate Finance Department 20 per cent
Corporate Finance BU 31 per cent
Internal Audit Department  40 per cent
Interior Department.                           42 per cent
Field Sales – RN Department  48 per cent
Communication and Public Affairs 50 per cent
Product Distribution Department 50 per cent
Distribution BU 52 per cent
Marketing BU 55 per cent
Sales Planning Department 55 per cent


“Overall Job Satisfaction”
77 per cent average across BCLC in 2010

President & Executive Assistance Div.

91 per cent

Product Distribution Centre 50 per cent
Internal Audit 50 per cent
Marketing BU 55 per cent
Customer Strategy & Corporate

Marketing Division, Richmond

57 per cent
Lottery Marketing BU 59 per cent
Communications and Public Affairs 60 per cent
Corporate Social Responsibility 60 per cent
Interior Department 63 per cent
Lower Mainland #1 Department 63 per cent
Vancouver Island Department 67 per cent

Several departments seemed more content, scoring much higher than average in most categories: Business Transformation Division, Casino Product Development BU, Casino Technical Services Department, eBusiness BU, Casino Security & Surveillance BU, Talent Management BU, Field Sale HN Department, and Executive Assistance BU.

The Corporate Social Responsibility Business Unit scored low on overall job satisfaction (60 per cent) but very high on department morale (90 per cent) and confidence in decisions made by senior leadership (80 per cent).

The Casino & Community Gaming Finance Department had fair job satisfaction (79 per cent), and very high confidence in decisions made by senior leadership (93 per cent), but vey low department morale (57 per cent).

Only 4 per cent of BCLC staff said the company was “moving in the wrong direction.” Some of their comments were recorded:

* “Expanding gaming too quickly and raising the limits has worsened the effect on the number of problem gamblers.”

* “The Ombudsman came through here not even three years ago, and we’ve already lost sight of the positive changes we began making.”

* “Our current strategy is to take a bunch of products that weren’t acceptable to be released in previous years and to fire them out into the market as fast as possible to make a quick buck.”

* “The major focus seems to be placed on the EGaming side of the business, and while I agree that this is a big part of the future of gaming, I do feel that the traditional part of our business is being sacrificed as a result.”

* “The only value that we are focusing on is trying to make more money.”

The “Ipsos Loyalty” study was obtained The Tyee under the freedom of information law.

Stanley Tromp is a Vancouver-based journalist.

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