Hospitality company, Connect Catering have been voted the 5th best company to work for in The Sunday Times 100 Best Companies to work for, and top in the overall mid-sized company category.
Established in 1989, Connect Catering are a catering service solutions provider, specialising in managing clients’ onsite catering, purchasing, consulting and training. The growing company, which now has 74 sites across the UK, encourages employees to achieve a score 95% or more in its own Connect Quality Audit. If the target is hit, each team member receives a certificate and a reward of £50 at the company’s November Company Conference.
At least 20% of staff are known to undertake charitable activities during business hours without incurring financial loss and the company offers a minimum of 26 days annul holiday. Connect Catering are also proud of their increasing level of equality with 40% of senior managers being women.
The company has three goals: to be proud of the catering service they provide, to ensure fairness and equality across the company, and to ensure all staff reach their potential through training and support.
The five-red-start hotel, The Landmark London, came in sixth, and has been applauded on its fundraising targets. For the hotels financial year 2017/2018 the target was set at £20,000, £10,000 of which is forecasted to be generated from the £1 guest bill charitable donation, with this money being passed to Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH) The additional £10,000 is to be raised by the team members of the Landmark London Hotel, and to be paid to Springboard and Hospitality Action.
Dishoom comes in at 19 and pays homage to Bombay’s old Irani cafés – big-hearted, barmy and bustling places that bring people together from all walks of life, and where everyone is welcomed with warmth. These cafés broke down barriers by bringing people together over food and drink. Bombay was more welcoming and more cosmopolitan for their existence. Dishoom pays homage to the Irani cafés and the food of all Bombay. Customers think of Dishoom as their own world – a world where differences are celebrated, rather than judged. Restaurants are full to the brim with Bombay food and culture. There are currently seven restaurants across the UK, including Edinburgh, Manchester, Kensington, Shoreditch, King’s Cross, Carnaby and Covent Garden.
Oakman Inns and Restaurants have redefined the concept of the modern public house, offering contemporary boutique accommodation, premium drink and casual dining experiences within the heart of their local communities. This, along with their unique method of training, has placed them at 25 in the list.
Development is varied, diverse and open to all. At the heart is Oakmanology, their award-winning learning hub that takes employees through both craft and leadership development. The hub uses a mix of online micro-learning opportunities including fact sheets, quizzes, e-learning, face-to-face training and assessments.
Other hospitality companies which made the list include high street favourite Las Iguanas. The Latin American style company have four core principles: fun, consistency, generosity and passion. These form the framework used to select and recruit employees. All staff must clearly display all four personality traits to be hired, and restaurant managers are trained to recognise them during the screening and interviewing process.
London based Flat Iron, a restaurant business that offers great quality steak, at affordable prices in a relaxed informal environment, came in at number 36, while the Thai-owned Royal Lancaster London Hotel, which recently had an £80 million refurbishment, was placed 38th.
Supporting Action Against Hunger, London-based restaurant Hawksmoor were ranked 45th after they were able to raise and donate an incredible £1million for the charity. Based in North Aston in Oxfordshire, Peach Pubs employ hundreds of people across 18 pubs ancient and modern. Each one is a well-loved ‘local’ to its regulars and hosts a wealth of fun events and special occasions. In July 2017, The Alchemist declared a ‘War on Straws’. Realising that they were using 2.5 million straws a year, all going to landfill, they removed straws from their bars. They’ve sourced a biodegradable alternative for those drinks that do need straws or for any guests that may request one. This, and the fact they are running two community initiatives to help the environment. Staff are helping to clean up the waterways at Media City, Manchester and they’re planting trees in Leeds, helped secure them the 96th spot.