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Team News

Zoe Bourne IdentityEden

The Sydney Immigration team recently welcomed two babies to the team!

Office Manager Dianne Bourne gave birth to Zoe who has grown so much since the picture in our last edition, and Senior Consultant Allanah O’Hanlan (nee Maguire) gave birth to Eden – just weeks apart! The gorgeous girls have been in to visit the office and both new mums are enjoying the new additions to their families.


Komathy Thumb

Meanwhile, the Melbourne Immigration Team has welcomed Komathy who has relocated from Sydney with her husband Mayo who has taken up a Vascular Surgery appointment at the Austin Hospital. Komathy and Mayo have also recently introduced a new addition to their own family – a Daschund puppy called Shultz.



Wridgways, in affiliation with Mindtribes and Mindpearl were very proud to be announced last week as Runner up, honorary mention for ‘Best Improvement Project’ at the Contact Centre Excellence Awards! The MC expressed: ‘in a conference that focussed on technology it is great to see the focus on people to deliver customer experience’. Pictured above is Div Pillay from Mindtribes, who has worked extensively with our team over recent months with amazing results. Well done to all involved, especially Martha Wedlock and the Fiji team members, as well as Petar Ralevski. To read more visit the Mindtribes website



Congratulations to our winners of the 2016 External Sales Person of the Year Award – Lee Plumridge, and our 2016 Internal Sales Person of the Year Award – Michael Knowles. Both of these winners are based in our Sydney Branch, and we were so pleased that Patrick White and Andrew Simpson were in attendance to present these awards, alongside our Consumer Sales Leader, Charles Garner.


Andrew and Ivan

Our General Manager of Immigration Services, Ivan Chait recently became a Fellow of the Migration Institute of Australia, which is an honour bestowed upon just 50 of the most recognised Immigration professionals within Australia. We would like to congratulate Ivan for being named as a Fellow, which is not only an amazing personal achievement, but also continues to build on the already excellent name of Santa Fe Immigration Services.




Congratulations to Deb Hodges from Sydney, who recently celebrated her ten years of service milestone at Wridgways. Thank you so much Deb, for your dedication to our company, and we wish you many more happy years to come.


Simon bike

Simon Delmo from the Melbourne Immigration Team has passed on this great photo along with some information about the advanced rider training he took part in recently…

“On December 19th I participated in the California Superbike School’s advanced rider training, which is held at Phillip Island. The Phillip Island Circuit is famous worldwide among riding enthusiasts and is considered one of the best motorcycle racetracks on the planet. Superbike School is an intense day of six periods of classroom instruction, each followed by track time to practise the newly learned skills. Thankfully the day was a lovely 29 degrees with a cool breeze coming off the ocean which borders the track. Even more fortunately I didn’t crash my bike!”



During January, several members of our Business Development team took advantage of the great corporate hospitality opportunities that the Australian Open provides, by entertaining our clients in style. With a week’s worth of world-class tennis, featuring some of the world’s best players, this relationship building exercise was a valuable experience and also lots of fun!


From the HR Team

As always, the HR team is here to help, and we want to provide you with all the resources you need to be happy and healthy in your workplace.

In each edition we feature content from the BUPA website’s employee blog which has a huge library of helpful articles to help you maintain a healthy work/life balance. Visit their website to read more.


Why Working on Work Relationships is Worth It

business, startup and people concept - happy international creative team talking at office

Do you ever feel like you see more of your work colleagues than your significant other? Well it may well be true.

As such, our relationships with our work mates play a big role in how we feel, think and act on the job. Even if you’re more shrinking violet than social butterfly, here are some handy tips to help elevate esteem in the office.

Make time for people

We all seem to have the habit of asking each other ‘how are you’ and we respond with ‘good thanks’. This 4 second interaction has no way of helping you understand a person or know who they are. The next interaction you have, try and make time to draw out a longer response, and pick up on any hobbies and interest that you can ask about again the next time you meet. Building on this helps to create a more meaningful rapport.

Be compassionate

Sometimes when others make mistakes that make us look bad, it can be a natural response to let out our steam. However, this can be very damaging to the relationship. The way you react to a colleague can make or break their confidence to complete their job and feel safe to try new things (which could be great next time!). Being constructive and understanding can help promote more effective learning from the situation.

Get involved

Getting involved in workplace events and social situations can help build relationships with your colleagues. The more you get involved, the more connected to the organisation you may feel.

Thank people

You may say thank you on a regular basis, but stopping to write a note or verbally express extra gratitude for how someone has positively impacted your days is a message anyone would appreciate hearing. And thinking about it, we’re more likely to want to do something for someone who shows they are grateful.

Notice others’ good behaviour

Research suggests the intention to help others may be catching  and the more virtuous we feel, the more generous we may be . Telling our colleagues when we think they have done something good or admiring their work ethic is only going to add fuel to the feel-good fire. And when we feel good we’re more open to creating new and strengthening existing relationships.

Safety Corner


During the month of January we had a slight decrease  in the number of incidents that occurred, even though we were still moving large volumes of goods around the country.

No. of Incidents LTI MTI
6 1 1


The number of incidents reported seems high, but in fact this is good that we now have our people reporting incidents at the time that they occur as we are able to mitigate any risk of serious injuries occurring.

We still need to be vigilant in the jobs that we do and make assessments of the risk that may be involved in something we do and aim to minimise or eliminate this risk to ensure that we all get to go home safely at the end of each day.


Remember, if you see something that could potentially be a hazard and cause injury to someone then please let one of your managers or myself know so that this risk can be removed or minimised.

If you think you may have a good idea around a safety improvement in your branch, then please give me a call or email me your idea, I would love to hear it.

If you have any questions regarding any safety issue at your branch, please feel free to call or email me at

Remember…..always think Safety First.

Our Customers Say


From U.K to Perth, WA
Dear Michelle,
I am writing to say thank you to you and the rest of the team for the smooth delivery of your container.
Moving our entire household possessions half way around the world was no more difficult than moving around the corner. In fact it was probably easier. The guys on Friday were outstanding and did everything I asked. Everyone is always quick to complain, but few people take the time to praise good service.
Once again, thanks for everything.
Kind regards,


From Canberra, ACT to U.A.E
Hi Louise,
As you know I was really impressed with the guys in Canberra, and the team over here was even better. They were amazing.
Judith has also been amazing. Very accommodating and extremely responsive.
We would really appreciate it if you could pass on our thanks and recognition to all the teams involved.
Finally, thank you again for the follow up and thank you also for making our move as easy as possible. You have been wonderful to deal with and have been so understanding of the complexity of our situation and our move. This has been very much appreciated by both Jonathan and I, and also Lucky.
By the way Lucky is settling in well and seemed completely fine after her big adventure.
Take care and no doubt we will contact you when the time comes to go home!


From Carnarvon, WA to Bairnsdale, VIC
Hi Craig,
On behalf of Rob and myself we just wanted to say a big thank you to yourself and your team for enabling us to move so smoothly.
We felt that right from the start you were friendly and accessible and delivered a high quality of service from beginning to end.
The team that delivered (Tim, Matt and Steve) were also really efficient and friendly. So please pass on our thanks to them too! (Trevor I think coordinated).
If there’s anything we can contribute, in terms of feedback etc. please let me know.
Many thanks,
Claire and Robert


From Chapman, ACT to Dalyellup, WA
Thanks for your help with our move. I must highly praise all the guys that came to our house. Their work ethic even during the heat was awesome. I did need two boxes opened due to things being packed that belong to the house. They didn’t complain about it. Their manners were impeccable through the entire process.


From USA to Double Bay, NSW
Shalene and Angela,
I wanted to personally thank you both for all of your assistance and attention in getting our Consul General’s three shipments delivered to her quickly and without a single problem. As the highest ranking American Diplomat in Sydney she is required to host a lot of events and having her personal items helps her house feel more like a home. She was pleased to be able to have her photos and painting up for her Thanksgiving event and to be able to serve her personal wine for a visiting delegation. Neither of which could have happened without your aid in getting her shipments to her quickly.
Thank you again for all of your help.


From Canberra, ACT to Harrison, ACT
Hi Dawn,
I would like to pass on my thanks to Scott and the guys who delivered all our goods on Friday December 16, 2016. They did a great job. They were professional and friendly, and were happy to assist us in any way possible. I would definitely recommend the team here in Canberra to anyone needing a removalist.
With many thanks,


From Silver Sands, WA to Griffith, NSW
Hi Amanda,

I would like to inform you that the three guys, Cob, Scott and the youngster can be congratulated on their efforts with regards to the service, respect and all over general attitude that they showed on the day. It is truly a privilege to have had them there packing the container. I would appreciate it if you could convey this message to them and even to your superiors as the lads did a stellar job.
Because of You, Tracy and the guys, we will highly recommend to others to make use of your service.

Thank you!


From Macquarie Park, NSW to Darwin, NT
Hi Dee,
Karlo and I want to thank you for doing an amazing work in assisting us with the interstate move, given that it was short notice. Karlo was impressed with how fast and efficient the work was done. It was a big group so the pick-up of items was finished in no time at all.
Thanks again for the assistance Dee. We appreciate it a lot.
Kind regards, Karlo and Jarl




PR header

Peter Cream – Townsville, QLD to Melbourne, VIC
Great service
Good service, all items were packed well. Arrived on time as planned on the day both on uplift and unload. Staff were helpful and fast when unloading our 5 bedroom house with a few bulky items, ended up having 5 staff at our destination address unloading items and assembling bedding and tables etc. which was very helpful. Would recommend Santa Fe and the cost was comparable/ cheaper than other quotes. Contact between myself and the company was fine and constant.

Suzanne Maddison – Brisbane, QLD to Brisbane, QLD
Great service, professional staff…. job well done
Wridgways took the stress out of our move and helped us throughout the process in a calm, professional and friendly way. Our representative was always available and answered all of the questions we had. The movers on the day were outstanding. Extremely professional but also very friendly which was nice considering they were coming and going from your home. Job well done and we will absolutely be using you again in the future!

Fan Fan – From Brisbane, QLD to Sydney, NSW
Perfect Relocation Santa Fe WridgWays
Our family relocated from Brisbane to Sydney NSW, it was a great experience with the Wridgways team. Starting from apartment visit, quotation, Packaging material delivery, insurance arrangement and car arrangement, the team was so professional. Paul had been so efficient and he even worked on Saturday and Sunday answering my phone call inquiry.
We are a family of three staying in 2 bedrooms from Brisbane and our family are settling well in Sydney now. All our belongings were delivered in perfect conditions together with our piano and car. It was great. Everything is delivered on time in full. Wonderful.
A big thanks XX 🙂 to Wridgways team.

Tomomi – From Brisbane, QLD to Brisbane, QLD
Always helpful!
This is our 3rd time using the Wridgways, and they are always so good.
This time we moved from 3 Bedroom apartment (but over 100 boxes + few bulky items) to the 4 Bedroom house. It was short distance, and actual move went very smoothly, but our building process was delayed a lot, and we had to keep our stuff at Wridgways’ storage for an extra 8 week, but they were so helpful, and it was a reasonable price. The delivery guys who came to our house were so polite and professional.
Thank you very much again, it was once again great experience with them!

Ernie – From Sydney, NSW to Townsville, QLD

I can only say “top marks” to Alan, Lee and the entire Packing and Removal Team, for the great help in facilitating our recent move from Sydney to Townsville. Their professionalism and dedicated approach to their Business is beyond question. The operation was carried out in a timely and extremely efficient manner. Their price was very reasonable and competitive. We can only highly recommend Wridgways. Many thanks.


Congratulations to our NPS Winners


Congratulations to all of our December and January medal winners in the Wridgways NPS Olympics.

Well done to everyone for your hard work in delivering Five Star Service to our customers during our busiest time of the year and we look forward to seeing who earns themselves a place on the podium for the month of February!

Special recognition to Karratha and Townsville who each managed the highly sought after NPS Score of 100 during the Busy. Absolutely amazing effort team!


Capital City Gold – Sydney (Score 42)

Capital City Silver – Brisbane (Score 32)

Regional Branch Gold – Karratha (Score 100)

Regional Branch Silver – Albury (Score 80)

Regional Branch Bronze – Gold Coast (Score 60)


Capital City Gold – Perth (Score 30)

Capital City Gold – Sydney (Score 30)

Regional Branch Gold – Townsville (Score 100)

Regional Branch Silver – Branch 35 (Score 50)

Regional Branch Silver – Darwin (Score 50)

NPS bottom

Staff Profiles

Michael thumb

Michael Kofoed – External Sales Consultant

I started working for Santa Fe in 2012 as a casual offisider in our Melbourne Branch after previously working in Graphic Design. In February of last year I asked whether there would be the opportunity to move out of the warehouse and into Sales. After going through the full interview process I was given the role of External Sales Consultant in August of 2016, and I’m really enjoying the challenge. As an External Sales Consultant I visit the homes of potential customers to complete their surveys, see what the volume of their move will be and look at what other services we can offer, if they require packing, or cleaning. My favourite part is the feeling when I win a job!

Outside of work I am a musician in my band “The Lifelike Project”. We play acoustic and rock music and have toured nationally, as headliners and as support acts and have worked with big name Australian artists like Shihad and 28 Days. If you would like to check out my band there are plenty of videos as well as gig information on our Facebook page 

Esther thumb

Esther Taft – Registered Migration Consultant (Melbourne Office)

Following a career in Human Resources for over 10 years, I am so glad that I took the bold step to change career and become a Registered Migration Agent in 2012. Being a migration agent is so rewarding and I get so much pleasure from helping people through the visa process to achieve their dreams of relocating to Australia. I was born in Melbourne and love the cosmopolitan lifestyle here. I have a daughter who trains as a competitive gymnast which makes life fairly fast paced, however I like to find time to head out for a run or leisurely bike ride when I can.


Great Place to Work Update

With the end of the Busy almost in sight, we thought now might be a good time for you to hear a little bit about what we’ve been doing behind the scenes within your Great Place to Work Leadership Team.

In October, we asked you all to take part in our second GPTW survey, and the participation rate for Australia was absolutely phenomenal. With so much data, across the entirety of our Global business it takes quite some time to compile these results and present them in a meaningful way. We are still waiting to receive more information, but are looking forward to sharing this with you in coming weeks.

We have also been working hard on putting together our next Action Plan on the topic of Teamwork and Culture. It will feature some really exciting initiatives, but we want it to be perfect, so we are making sure we give it the time it deserves. A suggestion that was prevalent during our Focus Groups was for us to have more opportunities to socialise and bond within our branches, and to recognise the hard work we have all been doing. With this in mind, we are encouraging all branches to hold a special Thank You celebration over the next few weeks to show just how much we appreciate the efforts everyone has been putting in over the Busy.

All branches are different, so it will be up to your Manager to decide how you celebrate, but for many branches this will be a special breakfast, morning tea or BBQ lunch with a real focus on including all members of staff, and giving ourselves a well-earned pat on the back.

Finally, we are asking for expressions of interest from anyone who feels that they would enjoy being a part of the Great Place to Work Team. We have already had several volunteers, and have a great group of ambassadors across Melbourne and Sydney, but if anyone from our other Capital Cities or regional locations is interested we would love to hear from you. Send an email through to Skye McDonald if you are enthusiastic about driving positive change within our organisation, and feel free to approach any member of our existing team if you would like to know more about what is involved.

We are really looking forward to doing more great work in 2017, and will be updating you regularly on our progress.

Have a great weekend everyone!

From your Great Place to Work Team,

Maddison Howe, Amy Ong, Rose Taylor, Leslie Chatfield, Laura Gordon and Skye McDonald


Great Place to Work - Leaders and Ambassadors 2017b

From the CEO

PW visits Aus

After my two visits to Australia, I have a few observations and sentiments that I would like to share with you.

Firstly, I am pleased to be working with all of you and am truly excited about the future of our company in Australia.

Secondly, we have a number of talented and passionate people.  It is clear that the team is working hard each and every day.  Despite the solid efforts, we have not yet achieved the results we would all like and the results needed for long term sustainability.  Obviously, that is disappointing for everyone and this is something we need to change.

The good news, however, is that we can and will make the changes necessary to return to profitability and to growth.

Why am I so confident about the future of our business in Australia given the current environment?  There are many reasons for my optimism but three stand out:

So how have we started making these much needed changes?  It is fairly easy to diagnose some of the key issues impacting our business (i.e. revenue decline, profitability).  The working sessions with the ALT in Melbourne were used to identify the issues and to draft the key initiatives and goals required to bring about positive change.

I want to thank you all for taking the time to complete the Great Place to Work survey in October of last year, and for providing us with your feedback.  I have read through the results and it is clear that we have a lot of work to do in order to receive this designation.  First and foremost we must build “trust” which currently is at 49%.  Our goal will be to increase trust to above 80% and the only way I know how to do this is by being open and honest with you at all times.  Improving the operational and financial performance of the business will help as well.

As you all know, Andrew Simpson has decided to leave the organisation, and I understand that this may have come as a surprise to many of you and may be a cause for concern for others.  Andrew has been a good colleague of mine on the GLT and I consider him a friend.  I am sorry to see him go and I take this opportunity to thank him for his efforts over the past three years with the company.  Not surprisingly, Andrew has agreed to remain with the company to help ensure a smooth and successful transition.  Again, my thanks to Andrew for his professionalism.

We have begun our search for a new Managing Director for Santa Fe Australia and have a number of good candidates already. I am in no hurry to find our new MD as experience has taught me that it is far better to wait for the best fit than to fill the position quickly.  We are looking for a strong individual who is capable of growing and leading our business in Australia to a position of preeminence in the market.

My next trip will be at the end of March when I will travel to Perth and then on to Melbourne.  I am looking forward to meeting the team in Perth and to working with the team on the progress of the key initiatives in Melbourne.  At some point I need to make my way to Brisbane and the Gold Coast to check on the development of the Suns.  It would seem they too have some work to do in order to be in a position of preeminence in the AFL.  I am not sure I will be able to provide any helpful advice.

I would like to close out by acknowledging that we have significant challenges ahead of us.  However, as we say in America, “this is not my first rodeo” and we will do whatever is needed to turn our business around.  My experience has taught me that the best way to view change is to consider the opportunities change brings to a company and its talent.  This is the perfect opportunity for our talent to step up and shine in what will ultimately be a rewarding journey.

Santa Fe Employee of the Year Awards Luncheon


This month we were absolutely thrilled to announce the winner of the Santa Fe Employee of the Year Award at a special lunch held in Melbourne’s Docklands.

With an amazing array of incredibly worthy nominees, it was a task in itself to choose just one from the 16 winners of the monthly awards presented throughout 2016.


With all but two of our 2016 winners in attendance, we celebrated and recognised the talents of each of these individuals, before announcing Maddison Howe, from the Sydney Move Dynamics Team as our winner of the grand prize which includes a cheque for $2000, and the prestigious accolade of being crowned as our Santa Fe Employee of the Year for 2016.

Maddi was nominated for the month of November by Skye McDonald, after her extensive dedication, passion and enthusiasm for the Great Place to Work initiatives within the business.

“As the first member of the Great Place To Work team to take on the role of group leader, Maddi has helped to coordinate the GPTW Leaders and Ambassadors in achieving an outstanding response rate for the 2016 GPTW survey.

Maddi has created a suggestion wall, held several branch morning teas and BBQs, focus groups, set up a dedicated Blue Collar Kiosk and did everything possible to create a Great Place to Work in the Sydney Branch.


Maddi has acted as a brilliant support person to our GPTW Leads and has pushed the team to meet their deadlines while encouraging the other Leaders to challenge themselves and think out of the box.

Maddi has always gone out of her way to help and is fast to respond to any questions or concerns. Thank you for all of your help Maddi and for everything you have done to improve Sydney’s response rate which is outstanding in comparison to last year. Thank you Maddi!” 


All of our monthly award recipients for 2016 were invited to the special lunch at River’s Edge, including Simon Hargreaves (Perth), Kym Illicevs (Darwin), Mina Baggs (Perth), Cheryl Yap (Melbourne), Chelsea Smith (Perth), Jaime Wood (Melbourne), Neal Smith (Rockhampton), Kristie Magazinovic (Melbourne), Alvin Daniel (Sydney), Dylan Hui (Sydney), Kay Woodcock (Perth), Sharona Ungar (Melbourne), Simon Delmo (Melbourne), Maddison Howe (Sydney), Carol Bacon (Townsville), and Maria Oras (Melbourne).

From this group of 16, only two team members – Neal Smith, and Carol Bacon – were unable to attend, with the rest of the group relishing the chance to bond and congratulate each other for their hard work.

Well done everyone, your passion and dedication is an inspiration to us all, and we can’t wait to see who takes out the monthly awards for 2017.










Safety Corner



Safety Statistics December 2016

During the month of December we had a total of 2 injuries around the country with 1 of these being a Medically Treated Injury.

No. of Incidents LTI MTI
3 0 1

Over the last few months we have had a couple of incidents involving step ladders.  I have included some guidelines for the use of step ladders if you check out the Safety Page on Yammer.


As we are well and truly into our busy season, I ask that everyone make sure they take extra care with the jobs they are tasked to do making sure that they are completed in the safest way possible.

Ask for assistance if you need help to lift something heavy or awkward and if you notice someone else might need a hand, then ask if you can help.

Everyone’s aim should be to go home safely to their families at the end of each day.

I wish you all a very safe and Merry Christmas and look forward to providing you further safety updates in the New Year.

As usual, if you have any questions regarding any safety issue at your branch, please feel free to call or email me at

Remember…..always think Safety First.