Brookwood Partnership Limited

Hidden mission statement
http://www.brookwood-ptnrs.com

Officially a Very Good
Company to Work For

Officially a Very Good
Company to Work For

Officially an Outstanding
Company to Work For

Officially an Outstanding
Company to Work For

Officially a World Class
Company to Work For

Officially a World Class
Company to Work For

Officially a Good
Company to Work For

Officially a Good
Company to Work For

Officially a Global*
Good Company
to Work For

Officially a Good
Company to Work For
Globally*

#
2
Best Company to work for in the UK
No items found.
th
Best Company
to work for

IT'S NOT ALWAYS appropriate to turn up to your job dressed in a kangaroo costume and carrying an array of edible bugs, but it's all in a day's work for Fred Ockwell. He is a chef manager at The Brookwood Partnership, contract caterers who this year have pulled off the impressive feat of being the runner-up on our list. In the kitchens of one of their clients, the City of London School for Girls, Ockwell presides over 12 people, who produce 450 meals every day for hungry pupils and teachers. His unusual outfit and snacks — which include chocolate-covered grasshoppers and salt-and-vinegar crickets — are part of Australia Day celebrations, which Ockwell introduced to bring a touch of sunshine to a January lunchtime. As well as the insects, there is an impressive range of fare on offer, including fresh fruit and vegetables, a salad bar and desserts. Ockwell says he loves his job. “I'm lucky because we've got a good team here,” he says. “And Brookwood gives us the licence to do what we do best — produce healthy food for the pupils. I also get on well with the girls and the school staff. There's always a buzz in this dining room.” Ockwell's colleagues also say the business delivers. They rank the group first in two of our eight factors — My Manager (85% positive) and Giving Something Back (86%) — and second for Wellbeing (78%). People are happy with the balance between their jobs and their home lives (82%, an unbeaten score in our survey)and more than half of them (52%) say they have never had a bad day — another top score. Ellen Goodwin, a catering supervisor, has worked at the company for 12 years and says the team spirit is infectious. “We all muck in together and support each other,” she says. “The leadership are hands-on and approachable.” The majority of Brookwood's managers are also chefs, and they spend plenty of time talking to their staff. This is received positively by the 809 employees, who say their leaders help them to fulfil their potential (82%), express appreciation for a job well done (87%) and talk honestly with them (90%). All three scores are in first place. The firm was set up in 1996 by Sue Parfett, Kate Martin and business development manager Graham Sibthorp, who died suddenly at the end of last year. Parfett and Martin describe their shock at losing their colleague, who they say is “greatly missed”. The three had worked together in the catering industry, and, in Parfett's words, “we decided we could do it better”. Today, there are operations at 97 sites, using fresh and locally sourced ingredients where possible. Ockwell, for example, gets his meat from nearby Smithfield market. Brookwood comes up trumps for saving the earth. Staff say the firm makes an effort to protect the environment (89%, unbeaten in our survey). An inhouse team representing the Planet Matters initiative comes up with ideas such as on-site vegetable and herb plots tended by pupils, as well as policies on fair-trade purchasing, local suppliers and food wastage. The company supports three charities: Build Africa; Magic Breakfast, which donates morning meals to primary schools; and Springboard, which helps underprivileged people in the hospitality, leisure and tourism industries. Workers agree that it has a strong social conscience (88%, third place). Back in the City of London dining room, Anne, 9, is thoughtfully chewing on a chocolatey creepy-crawly, which she pronounces “a bit fishy”. She says, “I like how the food is different every day. And I like how Fred dresses up.” www.brookwood-ptnrs.com

Featured Workplace Factors

My Manager

94% of staff agreed

I feel that my manager talks openly and honestly with me

Sponsoring beehives is among the more unusual environmental initiatives at Brookwood. The company has a Planet Matters Team of people who discuss and implement new initiatives, running vegetable and herb plots, using local suppliers, fairly traded products and refillable water bottles. There's a Waste Less programme to reduce and monitor food wastage and last year the firm had a Planet Matters Day. Every single one of its catering operations in schools – all 96 of them – took part, planning a day to raise awareness that the planet matters to it, its schools, and pupils who eat in its restaurants. They helped pupils grow herbs and vegetables for the kitchens, and encouraged them to reduce food waste and drink tap water in reusable, not plastic bottles. People say it genuinely cares about the environment. More than a third of employees got involved with charitable activities in work time last year, and the firm supports the charities Build Africa, Magic Breakfast and Springboard. It encourages people to do their bit.

My Team

94% of staff agreed

My team is fun to work with

Brookwood offers term time only contracts to a high proportion of employees, and this ensures they have a good work/life balance, particularly helping parents work. People say it really does help them find the right balance and stops the job interfering with responsibilities at home. Managers get private health care, and senior managers also have psychiatric cover to mitigate the risk of stress. People don't feel their health is suffering because of work or believe they are under too much pressure to perform well. It probably helps that there's a defined school dinner time, because employees say work deadlines are realistic too.

Giving Something Back

94% of staff agreed

My organisation encourages charitable activities

Sponsoring beehives is among the more unusual environmental initiatives at Brookwood. The company has a Planet Matters Team of people who discuss and implement new initiatives, running vegetable and herb plots, using local suppliers, fairly traded products and refillable water bottles. There's a Waste Less programme to reduce and monitor food wastage and last year the firm had a Planet Matters Day. Every single one of its catering operations in schools – all 96 of them – took part, planning a day to raise awareness that the planet matters to it, its schools, and pupils who eat in its restaurants. They helped pupils grow herbs and vegetables for the kitchens, and encouraged them to reduce food waste and drink tap water in reusable, not plastic bottles. People say it genuinely cares about the environment. More than a third of employees got involved with charitable activities in work time last year, and the firm supports the charities Build Africa, Magic Breakfast and Springboard. It encourages people to do their bit.

Quick Facts

Organisation established in
Total number of employees
Number of UK locations
Employee average age
Male : Female employee ratio
Employees earning £35k+
Employee turnover (voluntary)

Benefits

Private Healthcare

Companies offering private health insurance to all employees.

Women in Senior Management

At least 40% of senior managers are women.

List Positions

National Ranking
#
2
Best Small Companies to work for in the UK
National Ranking
#
2
Best Mid-Sized Companies to work for in the UK
National Ranking
#
2
Best Mid-Sized Companies to work for in the UK
National Ranking
#
2
Best Large Companies to work for in the UK
National Ranking
#
2
Best Big Companies to work for in the UK
National Ranking
#
2
Best NFP Organisations to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
Sector Ranking
#
Best Companies to work for in the UK
London
#
Best Small Companies to work for in London
London
#
Best Mid Sized Companies to work for in London
London
#
Best Mid Sized Companies to work for in London
London
#
Best Large Companies to work for in London
London
#
Best Big Companies to work for in London
The Midlands
#
Best Companies to work for in the Midlands
East of England
#
Best Companies to work for in the East of England
The North East
#
Best Companies to work for in the North East
The North West
#
Best Companies to work for in the North West
Northern Ireland
#
Best Companies to work for in Northern Ireland
Scotland
#
Best Companies to work for in Scotland
The South East
#
Best Companies to work for in the South East
The South West
#
Best Companies to work for in the South West
Wales
#
Best Companies to work for in the Wales
Yorkshire & The Humber
#
Best Companies to work for in Yorkshire & The Humber
Quote from the top...

Want to work for a Best Company?

If you like what you see and are interested in exploring any opportunities, please visit the organisation's careers page for more information.

Careers