JT’s sustainable credentials proves a draw at Chamber lunchtime series

JT has been explaining to an audience of Guernsey businesses how it has embarked on an ambitious programme to boost sustainability and increase the welfare of its people at the latest Chamber of Commerce Lunch and Learn event.

Since April, the Channel Island telecommunications company has been proudly sponsoring the series which have also included important topics such as cybersecurity and wellbeing in the workplace.

The session on JT’s Sustainable Journey, which was presented by Gill Knights, JT Group’s General Counsel and Head of Sustainability, was the highest attended of the series with a very engaged and keen audience.

Kate Marshall, JT’s Head of Guernsey Enterprise, said: “We were really delighted to support this programme of fascinating speakerswhich made the lunchtime events so interesting, leaving us all with so much to think about. JT is already deeply involved in the business community in Guernsey and these sessions highlight how well businesses, including JT, continue to work together to share best practice and support each other at different stages of similar paths. We are very grateful to the Chamber of Commerce for allowing us to share what we have learnt since we embarked on our 10-year Sustainability Strategy and hope that the lessons we learnt prove beneficial to others.”

Laura McKerrel, from the Guernsey Chamber of Commerce, added: “We have really enjoyed this series of ‘Lunch & Learn’ and are very grateful for the help and knowledge that all the speakers have passed onto us and those attending the events. JT’s session on sustainability highlighted a genuine interest from our members to learn more about where to start, what to avoid and how to implement a strategy. What was really useful was hearing how JT had planned and launched its strategy and how it has measured progress since. What was clear was that JT has learned to adapt to meet new challenges, proving that having an agile plan is often the best way to ensure success.”

JT helps empower and mentor the next generation of female leaders

JT leaders will join other business figures in guiding students from JCG and around the world as they take part in a global female leadership programme this week. LEAP, which stands for Leadership and Entrepreneurship Accelerator Programme, is open to all girls aged 14 to 18 and develops business and leadership skills with the participants launching social enterprise projects which are pitched to a group of business dragons.

JT’s Group Senior Legal Counsel and Head of Sustainability, Gill Knights, and JT International’s Head of Solution Design and Innovation, Marcus Irwin, will join local and international experts from across the business spectrum to act as coaches and mentors during the ten-day programme.

Local students will be joined by students from China, Taiwan, India, Turkey, Austria, Rwanda and the USA. They will be split into teams to come up with business ideas that they will pitch to a ‘Dragons Den’ at the end of the programme. There is real money at stake with up to £2,000 going to the winning team out of a total prize fund of £4,000. Previous projects have been based on social inclusion and waste management.

JT International’s Marcus Irwin will be on the panel of eight dragons, and he said: “This is an amazing opportunity for the young women who will be the next generation of entrepreneurs and business leaders. As a father, I understand the importance of nurturing talent from an early age and LEAP does a huge amount to bring that out of all those that take part.

As with our own recently launched JT Venture, a platform for ambitious start-ups and entrepreneurs to partner with JT and take their business to the next level, I will be looking closely at each proposition to see whether they have thought about supply chains, customer journeys, the digital outlook and just how they’ll fund their business ideas. This presents a real chance of investment and I have no doubt these girls will deliver business ideas that we’ll all see in the not too distant future.”

Throughout the week the students will take part in team building exercises and workshops and will hear inspirational talks from business leaders across all sectors, one of which is JT’s Senior Legal Counsel and Head of Sustainability, Gill knights, who will share how she came from an engineering and legal background to reach her current position.

JT will be donating SIM packs to all of the visiting students for the duration of the programme.

Peter le Masurier, from JCG, added: “This is the third year we have hosted LEAP and we are incredibly lucky to have so many prominent businesses involved along with successful business leaders who are prepared to give up their time to guide our students. I am looking forward to seeing how our students and the visiting students interact with each other, taking onboard, sharing knowledge and making the most of the invaluable advice and help they will be getting.”

Mitel rewards JT’s continued commitment to business excellence

JT is excited to announce that it has retained the highest level of accreditation from a global leader in business communications. JT was first awarded Mitel Platinum status in 2020 and is still the only telecoms company in the Channel Islands to have reached that level.

Platinum status is the highest accreditation available, making JT one of Mitel’s key partners and one of only 14 businesses across the UK, Ireland and the Channel Islands to have ever received the accolade. Earlier this year JT was chosen as Mitel’s Innovation Partner of the Year after not only setting up its own state-of-the-art Mitel Contact centre but also for completing a world-class, multi-dimensional and complex migration process of IT systems for the Government of Guernsey.

James Singleton, Strategic Partnership Manager said: “We are really thrilled that Mitel continues to recognise JT as one of its key partners, rewarding our commitment and the team’s genuine hard work. It means that once again our teams have met the highest level of expertise in delivering exceptional service to our customers. Together we have deployed, managed and supported many complex Mitel solutions across the Channel Islands. It’s thanks to the dedication of an exceptional team that not only are our customer’s communication needs in good hands but that world leaders such as Mitel distinguish us as an elite partner.”

Mitel services are found in businesses and organisations all over the world, providing a wide array of solutions, from simple business communications to sophisticated unified and collaborative communications, whether on-site or in the cloud.

Nick Riggott, UKISA Sales Director at Mitel, added: “We demand high standards from the channel partners we work with in our partnership programme and JT has shown its continued commitment to providing a service that surpasses most. They reached the Gold level in 2019 and then Platinum a year later. This achievement demonstrates that JT is a reliable highly-skilled partner with whom we built a strong and fruitful relationship to address current and future UC needs of businesses in the Channel Islands and beyond.”

JT helps Autism Guernsey expand its coding club

More young people on the autistic spectrum in Guernsey will have the opportunity to learn about computer coding following a donation by JT to Autism Guernsey.

The donation of 5 laptops and 5 Spheros (mini coding robots) from JT will make a huge difference to the Coding Club run by the charity. This welcome addition allows children who don’t own a laptop to take part and has meant five more people have been able to join the course.

Working with Spheros encourages exploration, imagination, and perseverance using computer science. They help to empower people of all abilities to discover their interests and passions.

Pip Carpenter, Head of Commercial Market at JT, said: “The Coding Club gives young autistic people the chance to learn in a stress-free environment. I’ve loved hearing about how some of the children come back to help new group members, providing a sense of purpose that is so important for self-esteem, confidence and motivation. We’re really pleased to be able to give another group of people the chance to take part in the Club, these education kits are brilliant for teaching STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths) subjects by creating activities that help put all they have learned about coding into practice.”

Martine White, Wellbeing and Enablement facilitator, from Autism Guernsey, added: “The Children’s Coding Club is often the only social activity that many of the young people we help engage in. Anxiety makes it very difficult for a lot of our young people to participate in group activities, but coding works well because the experience is completely structured from the second they arrive to the moment that they leave. They are focusing on set tasks which takes the emphasis away from social engagement. It means that the engagement that they do experience within the group is based on sharing a common interest and intention. It takes the mystery out of socialising and is a much more comfortable environment. They are all very interested in computers, gaming and coding, and are so excited about the Spheros, we are very grateful to our partner JT for taking our learning to a new level.”

Les Quennevais welcomes the leaders of the future

Les Quennevais welcomes the leaders of the future – meet the class of 2027

Later this week Les Quennevais School will host a two day transition programme for the largest cohort of new students they’ve ever had.

For over five years JT has partnered with the school to support Year 6 pupils as they experience a taste of life at the state of the art school, seeing for themselves where the next step on their learning journey could take them. The aim of the two day experience is to overcome those first day nerves for pupils, making sure they are familiar and happy with their new surroundings and the new faces that will greet them.

Pip Carpenter, Head of Commercial Market said: “When we started working with Les Quennevais School, we made a long-term commitment to support its students and teachers. At JT, we are genuinely passionate about nurturing the next generation. One of our ambitions, and a big part of our Sustainability Strategy, is to champion and support digital education and inclusion projects for everyone.

Technology has introduced revolutionary changes in all areas of our lives, from communication to the entertainment industry, but most especially in education. We believe that it’s really important our young people learn to harness all the potential of digital technology while still at school, and at Les Quennevais they are lucky to have that opportunity.’’

Over the summer, the Year 6 leavers will be asked to work on a project set by the Assistant Headteacher, Pete Jones. Students have the option to use a wide range of technology in their final project. This can be using digital photography, coding, animation or videos to present their work.

Sarah Hague, Headteacher of Les Quennevais School, added: “Transition to secondary school is such an important rite of passage. It opens doors and prepares students for the next stage of their school journey. I hope that this intake of students will come away from their transition days feeling excited as they embark on the next chapter in their lives. I am delighted that JT continue to support our future students who will be joining hundreds of other amazing young people, all making the most of the excellent facilities and teaching we have in our school.

We have a full programme of activities and experiences planned for their introduction to the school which I hope will be memorable, useful and fulfilling. I’m also hoping it will fuel them with inspiration that they can then use on their summer project.”

Designer brands auctioned for Autism Guernsey

Handbags, accessories and the latest designer frocks and shoes will be available at bargain prices at a fund-raising fashion show and auction for Autism Guernsey next week.

The charity event, sponsored by JT, is being held on Wednesday 22nd June at the St Pierre Park Hotel where donated dresses and outfits in sizes 6-22 will be modelled on the catwalk by some of the volunteers who help at the charity. They’ll be showing off high street brands and designer outfits, with additional clothes, shoes and handbags also available for sale.

And it’s not just designer clothing that’ll be going under the hammer. Among the many amazing auction lots donated by local businesses are pamper hampers, champagne, jewellery, cosmetics and much more plus a JT One Ultra subscription, kindly donated by JT.

Tamara O’Brien, Deputy Managing Director at JT Guernsey, said: “The Autism Guernsey Charity Fashion Show and Auction is a much-loved annual event and tickets sell out every year which we are delighted to be sponsoring. It promotes purchasing pre-owned outfits as a more sustainable way of buying clothes, as well as offering our Guernsey community some designer bargains and a fun night out. We hope it’s hugely successful and well attended so that Autism Guernsey can raise further funds towards the great work they do for our island and islanders.”

Tickets, which include a drink on arrival, cost £17.50 and are selling fast. They are available from Autism Guernsey on 01481 232879 or by emailing office@autismguernsey.org.gg.

Mandy Rowlinson, Fundraising Manager at Autism Guernsey, added: “Every time we hold this event it gets bigger and better. We raised nearly £5,000 when we last held it in 2021 with guests coming away with designer dresses and Mulberry handbags. Autism Guernsey couldn’t run their fundraising events without the help of our fantastic volunteers and our incredible partner JT, so a big thank you to them all for their help and support.”

Sark test bed for solar powered mobile network

JT has installed six solar panels on Little Sark as part of a trial to see whether further mobile sites in the Channel Islands can be powered by renewable energy.

The panels, which were installed by the Little Green Energy Company, will maintain the batteries that power the antenna which provides JT’s mobile phone coverage in Little Sark. If successful, this model could be used at other JT sites across the Channel Islands, meeting JT’s commitment to reduce the company’s reliance on power from the grid.

Joseph Donovan, Private Circuit Project Manager, said: “Operating in Sark provides its own challenges, so it’s the perfect place for JT to test equipment that needs to work with minimal intervention and maintenance. This trial will provide an opportunity for our engineers to gauge how well our network will handle calls and data using 100% renewable energy. The mobile site will use the electricity grid to provide the initial charge of the batteries, but after that, it’s the power of the sun that will keep those charged up and working, day and night.’’

Six panels have been set up next to the small mobile radio site, using kit specially designed to run in remote areas that are not connected to the grid. If the trial is a success, it is hoped that more of JT’s equipment and infrastructure can be transferred to sustainable sources of power.

Tom Noel, Director of Corporate Affairs and Sustainability, added: “We have set out to make significant reductions in the amount of carbon emissions our activities generate. Everything we do, from decisions made by JT’s Board to the vehicles our engineers drive, must fit into the strategic goals we have set to become carbon neutral. Our renewable energy initiatives will make a real difference and we are proud to be backing this project in Sark to reduce emissions and our carbon footprint. We’re really hoping that during the summer it will run 100% of the time on solar power, providing a greener way to run our network in Sark.”

See the world through a different lens

Photography enthusiasts in Guernsey are being asked to consider the challenges and strengths people on the autistic spectrum have when taking part in a competition with a difference during World Autism Acceptance Week (28 March – 2 April).

Autism Guernsey is running a digital photography competition, sponsored by JT, with the theme ‘From a Different Angle,’ reflecting how autistic people see the world, hoping that the entries will give an eye-opening perspective on how we all see things differently.

Judges will choose the photo that best reflects the theme, regardless of whether it’s taken using a smart phone camera or the latest digital SLR, is in black and white or colour. The competition is open to everyone in Guernsey and the winner will receive  an Apple iPad, donated by JT, who have selected AG as their Chosen charity for 2022.

Mandy Rowlinson, Fundraising Manager for Autism Guernsey, said: “World Autism Acceptance Week aims to draw attention to people living with autism, both to educate those unaware of the condition, and to help make the world friendlier to those who are affected by it.

This year, with the help of the JT Team we’re running a digital photo competition which will showcase how we view things. I’m really excited to see just how objects can be viewed and explained differently, because as a society we are all different and embracing difference is what makes us a community.’’

All photos that are sent in will be displayed on a digital screen in the JT shop on World Autism Awareness Day, Saturday 2 April when the winner will be announced.

Tamara O’Brien, Deputy Managing Director, JT Guernsey, added: “Peoples’ understanding of Autism has improved greatly over the last few years. A powerful indication of this, is the campaign  to move from ‘awareness’ to ‘acceptance’, which is about helping people lead more fulfilling lives.  We are hoping Islanders will get involved in World Autism Acceptance Week and help us change attitudes and foster change, while at the same time reminding us, we are all unique, all different and sometimes we need to look at things from someone else’s viewpoint.’’

On Saturday 2nd April the Autism Guernsey team will be in the JT shop to chat to people about what they do. Accompanying them will be ‘Archie the Recycling Goat’ one of Autism Guernsey’s famous Goats from 2021, who helped to raise the profile of the Golden Guernsey Goat Trail, which raised money for Autism Guernsey and the Guernsey Adult Literacy Project.

Solar energy trial for JT exchange

Although the west of the island is generally more known for its fabulous sunsets, now the sun’s rays are being put to another use in a trial that will see one of JT’s telephone exchanges using renewable energy. In the first trial of its kind by JT, 84 solar photovoltaic (PV) panels are being installed on the roof of the West Exchange in St Ouen’s Village.

JT’s 10-year Sustainability Strategy commits the company to move 50% of its energy consumption to renewable sources by 2025. This has already resulted in a successful project with the Little Green Energy Company in Sark to use the sun’s energy to help power the JT mobile network on the island.

In Jersey, JT is working with solar energy experts SunWorks to install the panels on the roof of the West Exchange building. The pilot will see the extent to which the solar can provide a supplementary source of electricity, if successful, it could be used across more sites around the island reducing JT’s reliance on the grid.

Tom Noel, JT’s Director of Corporate Affairs and Sustainability, said: “We made a clear promise when we launched our Sustainability Strategy that we would apply its principals across every part of our business. One of the most visible demonstrations of that is to install solar panels on prominent sites and we hope that the trial will tell us whether it will work elsewhere. As a technology business, we use a large amount of energy and if we can switch to renewable sources of power where possible,  we will make less impact on the planet – using energy generated in the sunniest place in the British Isles.”

Mark Brandon, Director of SunWorks, said: “When a company like JT comes to us with plans to use renewable energy in a practical way, we know we are dealing with a client that’s speaking the same language as us. It is important for the larger local businesses like JT to consider where their electricity comes from and make all efforts to use local resources for electricity generation. This supports the global transition to renewables and can deliver significant long term savings on electricity.”

Employee Recognition goes digital with JT All-stars

JT has launched a new digital initiative that gives their people the opportunity to recognise and reward team members across all locations and in real-time for delivering on the company’s strengths.

With a passion for people and a drive for digital innovation, JT set about creating an easy to use, digital platform, that was managed by their own people, and was simple and engaging.

The new JT All-Stars recognition platform gives everyone the ability to thank their peers, colleagues and co-workers, and also gives Managers the option to allocate points that can be redeemed from an extensive range of prizes.

Having launched the scheme less than a month ago, already over 85% of JT’s 586 strong global team have activated their accounts, with over 1,000 peer recognitions being made.

This latest scheme is just one of a few digital initiatives being launched by JT resulting directly from listening to employee feedback. It’s part of the company’s innovative culture and drive to building an inclusive working environment, where people are encouraged to have a voice, so everyone feels valued and heard. So now, when a co-worker does something great, they can share that moment with the whole team or business by sending them a recognition in real time.

Laura Belo, JT’s Head of HR, said: “We’re so proud of our people and everything we achieve together, but what’s really special is seeing people taking the time to thank and reward each other. This new platform not only puts our people first it empowers them to create positive business outcomes and sustainable performance. Simple acts of kindness can go a long way and we’re thrilled with both the adoption rate and feedback from our people so far.”