Driving the Social Value Agenda | Compass Group UK

Compass Drives Social Value Agenda

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Compass Group UK & Ireland has appointed a Head of Social Value, Laura Neville, dedicated to leading the social value agenda - with a focus on employees, clients and communities.

Laura will develop and deliver social value, in line with the National TOMs social value framework. She will support Compass’ “Our Climate Promise”, social mobility and health and wellbeing strategies, as well as measuring the impact of initiatives to inform future programmes and best practice. She will guide Compass’ clients to be at the forefront in understanding social value and what it can bring to their organisation, achieving their goals, aligning strategies and implementation.

Laura has a background in procurement and led the social value agenda for Compass’ procurement division, Foodbuy, from 2018. In 2020, she became Compass Group PLC’s Global Responsible Sourcing Lead and has now returned to the UK&I division to lead the social value agenda.

Compass is also partnering with the Social Value Portal, which aims to promote better business and community wellbeing through the integration of social value into day-to-day business. The Portal is an online solution that allows organisations to measure and manage the contribution they and their supply chain makes to society, reporting both non-financial and financial data to demonstrate value and progress, underpinned by the National TOMs.These steps further determine Compass’ commitment to delivering social responsibility, as well as align with the Government’s levelling up agenda. In May 2021, Compass Group UK & Ireland announced its industry-leading target to reach Climate Net Zero by 2030 and launched a Roadmap and Charter, which provide more detail on the strategy to create a sustainable food system.

Throughout the Covid pandemic, Compass’ people centric approach was highlighted with initiatives such as the introduction of a medical helpline; the ‘Helping Hands’ financial fund, for employees who needed additional short-term support; and an enhanced Employee Assistance Programme. This momentum continued when in March 2021, Compass published its Opportunity Action Plan - the culmination of months of work with the Social Mobility Pledge team, to enhance opportunities for all.

Compass has also revealed plans to create the Compass Group Academy - a multi-million pound investment designed to develop much needed skills in the hospitality industry, with a focus on supporting young people from disadvantaged areas. Compass continues to deliver industry leading apprenticeships and has supported over 200 Kickstart placements. The company has adopted a diversity and inclusion agenda that ensures everyone can thrive.

Laura Neville, Head of Social Value for Compass Group UK & Ireland, commented:

“The Covid pandemic has further highlighted the impact that corporate organisations can have in delivering social value. I have been privileged to have worked with many social enterprises and seen the positive impact they can have on our society and communities in which we live and work. Compass employs thousands of people, supporting many clients – so sharing best practice and ideas in this area will have a huge impact for us and those we work with. This is an exciting opportunity to ensure our social value strategy delivers tangible changes for our people, clients and society.”

Robin Mills, Managing Director, Compass Group UK & Ireland, added:

“Compass has long been committed to doing the right thing. Throughout the pandemic we have had a people first philosophy, supporting our employees as well as the communities in which we work. Our social mobility strategy ensures whatever your background, you have an opportunity to progress and develop a career with us. Additionally, our net zero ambition has seen us put sustainability at the heart of all our decision making, as we work to transform the food system and achieve our net zero goal.

“Laura’s expertise and passion will further enhance our work in this area, especially through understanding our clients’ agendas alongside the communities they operate in - offering advice and support to maximise opportunities for doing good.”

Guy Battle, CEO, Social Value Portal, said: “As the UK’s leading food and support services provider, we are delighted that Compass is engaged with the social value movement and will also be joining us at this year’s National Social Value Conference.

“Generating, measuring and reporting social value initiatives that are already in place will serve to encourage both Compass and its suppliers to seek other ways to drive social value forward, increasing their positive impact on the communities in which they operate. We are looking forward to working with Laura and the team as they continue on their social value journey.”

Laura Neville