Springboard's Awards for Excellence celebrate what a great place the hospitality industry is to work. The 2009 awards saw North East Marriott Hotels walk off with the Best Regional Initiative Award.
What is the award?
The award recognises successful initiatives that have been developed to identify and address regional/local issues. Whether as an individual or group, in partnership or independently, a large organisation or small - the judges were looking for evidence of clear innovation and sustained regional impact, lateral thinking and creative use of resources.
Why did North East Marriott Hotels win?
The firm has a proactive approach to community projects involving schoolchildren, local universities and colleges, housing associations and charitable organisations, to support the communities in which their staff and families live.
Using Marriott International's "Spirit to Serve" ethos, the initiative has given dignity, pride and self confidence to those who may otherwise not be afforded such opportunities or second chances.
Part of the Marriott's recruitment strategy is to look at innovative ways to bridge the skills gap. It aims to engage with partner organisations such as Job Centre Plus to recruit from within the local community and focus on key need claimants such as lone parents, carers, incapacity benefit clients and ex-offenders, as well as job seekers who are representative of the diverse pool of talent within the North-east of England.
As part of this, they have created an initiative to work with a challenging group of offenders within HMP Durham and to devise practical solutions for every individual on the programme. North East Marriott Hotels delivered "Spirit to Serve" training, Interview skills, NVQ and job-ready qualifications, at the end of which participants were better prepared for a return to the workplace.
Why did the judges choose it?
The impressed judging panel felt that this project was sustainable and could be devolved nationally. Guaranteed work trial and interviews added to the impact.
How do I find out more?
For more about Springboard and its Into Work programmes, helping people into the tourism and hospitality industry, visit www.springboarduk.net or call 020 7497 8654.