The BII is delighted to unveil the eight overall category winners of the 2017 National Innovation in Training Awards, their national awards programme celebrating the very best in training excellence and innovation within the licensed industry.
The winners were revealed at a glittering awards ceremony at the iconic Café de Paris in London’s West End on November 21st. The finalists joined top operators and respected industry professionals from across the sector to hear who had won the coveted top spots in each category.
The range of NITA award categories are designed to showcase both individuals and businesses operating in today’s licensed retail sector who demonstrate that they are truly putting their people first, with innovative training programmes that encourage long-term careers in the sector. The judging process is the most rigorous of its kind, and following an extremely high standard of written entries received by the BII this year, finalists were chosen to attend an assessment day. Here, they were asked to present in person to a panel of independent industry professionals and sponsors, followed by an in-depth interview.
The BII’s CEO Mike Clist said: “The NITAs are a celebration of the most successful individuals and businesses in the licensed retail market today. Our finalists have shown that they value, support and champion their people by continuing to invest in and develop their training programmes. It’s vital that we recognise, reward and share their successes so that we can encourage further innovation in our fantastic industry for years to come.
“Last year’s winners set an incredibly high standard, but we were delighted that the 2017 finalists have continued to raise the bar, bringing a wealth of new techniques and creativity to their training. The use of new technology and the holistic approach to the way they design their training programmes, has benefitted their businesses from the ground up and directly impacted on financial performances, growth and staff retention – we congratulate them all.”
The winners of the 2017 NITAs are:
Best Apprenticeship Programme Sponsored by HIT Training
A new award this year, to reflect this positive movement in the industry, judges here were looking for examples of new thinking and innovation in training methods and platforms which appeal to this group of learners, as well as a flexible approach.
Winner: St Austell
Best Managed Training Programme (Companies under 50 outlets) Sponsored by Admiral Taverns
This award looked at companies operating in the managed on-licensed retail sector who operate less than 50 outlets. Judges were looking for evidence of commitment to supporting all levels of employees through structured, accessible and flexible training.
Winner: 16 Hospitality
Best Managed Training Programme (Companies over 50 outlets) Sponsored by Star Pubs and Bars
The panel here were looking for some really solid measurement of the effectiveness of training both in terms of internal staff development and retention as well as actual commercial results.
Winner: Bill’s Restaurants
Best Casual Dining Training Programme Sponsored by HGEM
Another brand new award this year, following incredible growth in this sector, judges were looking at how innovation in food offers and type of food service has created the need for new training methods and how companies have developed and delivered these.
Winner: Oakman Inns
Best Training Programme (Leased & Tenanted Companies under 200 outlets) Sponsored by Greene King
This award looked at leased and tenanted companies operating in the on-licensed retail sector who operate less than 200 outlets. Judges were looking for evidence of commitment to supporting all levels of employees through structured, accessible and flexible training.
Winner: St. Austell
Best Training Programme (Leased & Tenanted Companies over 200 outlets) Sponsored by the BII
The panel here were looking for some really solid measurement of the effectiveness of training both in terms of internal staff development and retention, as well as actual commercial results.
Winner: Punch Taverns
Professional Trainer of the Year Sponsored by BIIAB
This award focused on the individual professional trainer and their skill in training design and what’s unique and successful about their delivery of that training.
Winner: Simon Haslam
Licensee Trainer of the Year Sponsored by Stonegate
This award celebrates the innovation in creating an individual programme and focussed particularly on their personal style in coaching and motivation.
Winner: Mark Holden
Finally, there were 2 very special awards presented on the evening:
Franca Knowles Lifetime Acheivement Award Sponsored by C&C Group
This award was chosen by a panel, led by Keith Knowles, CEO and founder of Beds & Bars. It identified and recognised an individual working within the on-licensed retail sector who leads by example and demonstrates training and people are at the core of what they do.
Winner: David Bruce
Innovation Award Sponsored by Sky
Introduced last year, this special award was decided by a panel, led by Mike Clist, CEO of the BII. It celebrates an individual or company who show the strongest innovative thinking and delivery.
Winner: Dan Davies and CPL Training Group