Learning Curve Group is supporting CH&CO, a leading independent catering and hospitality business, to use its Apprenticeship Levy for an ambitious skills programme that furthers career opportunities in the industry through its nationwide training academies.
The group of three academies, including the Chefs Academy, Leadership Academy and Front of House Academy, delivers a range of qualifications and vocational programmes, including apprenticeships and accredited flexible, work-based training.
Employing more than 6,200 people at more than 750 sites across the UK, CH&CO creates uplifting catering and hospitality experiences across all life stages and locations, including workplaces, destinations, venues, events, education, livery and healthcare.
The training programmes build on CH&CO’s existing workforce development strategy. Designed to enhance the skills and confidence of new and existing team members working back of house, front of house and in support services across its business, the training supports roles such as chefs, waiters, bar tenders, baristas and those employed in other hospitality and catering positions like accountancy and HR.
Under the Chef Academy programme, Learning Curve Group is currently supporting the training of 63 learners working towards the Level 2 apprenticeship.
In addition to their on-the-job training at CH&CO locations across the country, apprentices also take part in bi-monthly kitchen-based masterclasses. Delivered by Learning Curve Group’s hospitality-industry-experienced Talent Coaches, the masterclasses cover speciality dishes and ingredients such as game and seafood.
Apprentices can also take part in CH&CO ‘Saturday Kitchens’ where the company’s Culinary People Development Manager, Steve Oram, leads a full-day skills session and demonstration of techniques, which the trainees have the opportunity to emulate.
CH&CO has also introduced the Leadership Academy, which offers a Team Leader Apprenticeship and a Level 5 Foundation Degree Apprenticeship for aspiring leaders. This is supported by Learning Curve Group and its talent coaches
Further training is available for front-of-house teams through the Front of House Academy, which offers training in skills such as food service and barista, plus qualifications including Hospitality Team Member and Team Leading.
North East-based Learning Curve Group offers a wide range of courses for employers looking to increase the skills of their employees, often through dedicated websites accessible from any location. It has also become a primary source of support and information for businesses accessing the Apprenticeship Levy.
The benefits to businesses include maximising workforce efficiency, boosting business productivity and ensuring the availability of a new generation of skilled employees.
James Godwin, Head of People Development, CH&CO, said: “It’s essential we continually develop the skills of our team alongside attracting new and talented entrants that can form the future generation of the hospitality industry.
“The combined work with Learning Curve Group, alongside the three-fold expansion of our People and Development Team in the last year, demonstrates our commitment to creating and enhancing career opportunities for people in the food and hospitality markets.”
Brenda McLeish, Chief Executive of Learning Curve Group, said: “CH&CO’s workforce development strategy is a great example of how the hospitality sector can attract and retain quality people through continual learning and career-enhancing training opportunities.
“Combining our experience in the food and hospitality industry with CH&CO’s innovative approach to its business and people development has created a partnership that will benefit people looking to enter and follow a career in this exciting and fast-moving sector.”