We have developed a strong, vibrant culture inherent in everything that we do as a practice - from the projects we deliver, to the way we interact with each other. Our values and our purpose, to create great places and be a great place to work, runs through every strand of our business, and every facet of the HTA community.
We have an extensive programme of ‘Care and Growth’activities held throughout the year, developed in response to staff surveys and requests. These include an extensive Learning and Development programme; an extensive social activity programme; staff benefits and a healthy workplace culture that nurtures our team.
HTA is committed to ensuring that our practice is a great place to work and we believe that our success relies on the active encouragement of contributions from a diverse range of people both within and outside the practice. We encourage everyone at HTA to be themselves and share in different perspectives, experiences, lifestyles and cultures in a safe, supportive environment.
What we deem to be important at HTA, and what comes across in our core values, is an emphasis on conversation and dialogue across the practice. This year, we have openly discussed, shared and celebrated many of our personal experiences, built new external relationships, formed and engaged in diversity related groups and networks including: Stonewall, WiP, WiSH, Equal Approach, the Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust, and Rethink Mental Health, to name a few.
HTA’s first LGBTQ Network Group - incl. - was launched in May 2017. The formation of HTA incl. was prompted by staff who identify as LGBTQ and wished to establish a network to support and inform within the practice. Inclusivity is at the heart of the group’s ethos and a space is created for allies to join and participate in discussions and events.
We have been active in promoting events for women within both the practice and the wider industry. Previously, we have hosted networking events for women, participated in industry led discussions, attended events and spoken on panels about industry issues facing women. We are active participants of WISH (Women in Social Housing), LBWomen, the NLA’s Women Speed Mentoring, Women in Property and Women Talk Real Estate, amongst others.
HTA continues to support opportunities for BAME communities through working with The Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust. Over the past two years, HTA has offered three Part 1 places to young architects and a technologist introduced to us by the SLCT. We continue to provide an annual bursary to the Building Futures programme and this year, we have sponsored an award, which was presented by Ben Derbyshire at The Annual Stephen Lawrence Memorial Lecture this year at RIBA alongside Francis Kéré, Spencer de Grey and Simone de Gale.
There has been a great deal of work done in recent years to alleviate the stigma around mental health in the UK, demonstrated by its prevalent position in current political debate and recent party manifestos. HTA have previously invited Rethink Mental Illness to deliver workshops with our staff, providing essential knowledge and guidance on how to promote wellbeing and act conscientiously when people are encountering difficulties with their mental health. The workshops also provided useful resources and tips on where to signpost people to, for more professional help and advice.