Local employer O2 has paid a cash bonus of up to £1,000 to each eligible O2 employee under its ‘Thanks a Million’ programme. The company promised the bonus last year if O2 added an additional one million new customers in 2006. The company hit this target during 2006, bringing the figure up to over 17.6 million customers and confirming O2’s position as the largest mobile operator in the UK. 95% of employees participated in the payout. O2 is a large regional employer, with currently over 1,700 people working at its Call Centre and retail stores in Runcorn. Each eligible employee in the Runcorn area has received a cash bonus of up to £1,000 this month as a gesture of thanks from O2 for a job well done. Matthew Key, Chief Executive, O2 UK commented: “I would like to thank all our employees who have helped O2 to achieve this goal. Our people are at the heart of our business, and true customer loyalty can only be achieved by an engaged and motivated workforce that puts its customers’ needs first. “The ‘Thanks a Million’ programme was created to rally everyone in the business behind a clear goal – to add one million new customers by delivering a complete O2 experience to customers that is consistently better than that offered by any other mobile operator. We hit our target of a million net customers and I am delighted to announce the payment of the cash bonus today. I believe it’s vital that everyone at O2 continues to share and benefit from the growing success of the company’s business and we are pleased that this scheme will continue into 2007.” This year the Thanks a Million programme will focus on measuring how happy customers are with O2 – if O2 is No. 1 for customer satisfaction in the UK at the end of December 2007, eligible employees will receive another bonus of up to £1,000 each in 2008. This forms part of O2’s strategy of putting customers at the heart of its business. Recently, O2 has been ranked 5th in The Sunday Times’ 2007 Best Big Companies to Work For List. This is the highest ranking ever achieved by a mobile operator. In addition, O2 has been awarded first place in the “Best for Well Being” category and was also short-listed in the “Best for Giving Something Back” category.