Corporate Social Responsibility
Our vision is to be a growing independent family company that leads the UK market in brewing and hospitality. To help achieve this, we need to have excellent corporate practices. Part of this means considering the impact we have on the local communities in which we trade. We need to behave responsibly and play a positive role in these communities. This ties in with our core values – it is about doing the right thing, and treating others as they wish to be treated.
Our corporate social responsibility plan is split into four areas: people, responsible retailing, community and environment.
Our team members are critical to our success, and we aim to make Hall & Woodhouse a great place to work. Some of the steps we have taken include:
- Defining our culture based on our core values, and living these values. Part of this culture is recognising a job well done.
- Training and investment in people. Our Academy promotes learning and development across the business.
- Effective communication with our team members. We have regular team briefings, annual team surveys across the whole business, and team member forums.
- Making our working environment better. We are improving the green rooms in all our Managed Houses – these are places where our team members can relax when not working. We also have a gym at the brewery, open to team members, shareholders and our pensioners.
A large part of our business relies on the success of our Business Partners, and on building good relationships with them. We provide our Business Partners with training and support, ranging from cellar management through to detailed business planning with our Area Managers.
Hall & Woodhouse has published a Code of Practice, accredited by BIIBAS (an independent trade body), which clearly sets out how it will work with its Business Partners.
A key element of looking after people is to provide a safe place to work or to enjoy our hospitality. This is non-negotiable, and something we take extremely seriously. We have designated health and safety officers, a planned repair and maintenance programme across out estate and brewery site, a health & safety committee chaired by a Director, and regular discussions about health and safety at management committee and board levels.
Our Safety Vision
‘To develop a safety culture which upholds our ADIKT values and can be used as a positive role model for others to aspire to. We, as a team, must live and breathe safety because we want to, rather than follow the health and safety rules because we have to. Everyone is responsible for safety’.
Hall and Woodhouse – A Safe Place 2 Work
To be a truly great place to work, Hall and Woodhouse must be a safe place to work. In order to achieve this we have three underlying principles -
Think safety in everything we do and every decision we make.
Care about ourselves, our fellow team members and our guests. We must give constructive feedback when we see something that worries us in relation to safety, and listen if we get safety feedback. Safety is being raised because someone cares, not because they are being a ‘job’s worth’.
Act on safety – it is all our responsibility, not to act is abdicating responsibility. Acting on safety shows are values of Integrity, Kindness and Teamwork.
The houses and Brewery are supported by highly regarded Safety Ambassadors and there is a comprehensive planned repair and maintenance programme, overseen by our Team of Surveyors. We are proud to work with Competent Authorities, Trade Organisations and safety professionals to ensure we are leading in safety, rather than following.
Committed leadership is key to a positive safety culture and at Hall and Woodhouse safety is discussed as a matter of priority at Management Committee and Board levels, the monthly Safety Committee is chaired by a Director and our safety performance scrutinised by a Non-Executive Director.
We believe that drinking in a public house provides a safe environment in which to enjoy alcohol. We ensure that we sell alcohol responsibly in a number of ways, including:
- In our Managed Houses, we operate a “Challenge 21” policy to combat the risk of underage drinking.
- Many of our public houses are members of Pubwatch schemes.
- Hall & Woodhouse supports Drinkaware, a charity which promotes responsible drinking.
Food quality is of fundamental importance, and we are very careful about where we buy our food from. In our Managed Houses, we source our food locally where possible, and our food is bought from reputable sources.
We always aim to treat our suppliers fairly, and to employ locally where we can. This helps to create strong relationships, built on trust and honesty. This in turn helps us to rely on our suppliers and the quality of their goods and services.
Hall & Woodhouse supports its wider community in many different ways:
- We support a designated charity every year. Last year, we raised over £100,000 for Naomi House. This year, our chosen charity is Macmillan Cancer Support.
- We support local communities via our Dorset and West Sussex Community Chests. These Community Chests make donations to local organisations and good causes every year.
- We have a company charity called The Woodhouse Trust, which helps team members and ex-team members suffering real financial hardship. This charity is mainly funded by donations from Hall & Woodhouse’s shareholders.
- At a local level, individual public houses provide support to local charities through sponsorship and fund raising.
- Every year, team members across the Managed House estate and brewery carry out a litter pick around their local areas.
Hall & Woodhouse aims to reduce its carbon footprint and its impact on the environment. We have set up a Green Team, which is working on three main green projects: energy, water and waste.
Our overall year on year consumption of energy has decreased since 2007/08.
At the brewery, we have carried out a number of major projects over the past few years. In 2008, we worked with the Carbon Trust to reduce energy usage. This focussed mainly on refrigeration and our effluent plant, and has not only reduced our carbon footprint, but also delivered significant savings to the business.
In 2012, we spent £5m on a new brewhouse. This is much more efficient than the old brewery.
This year, we have installed brewhouse heat recovery equipment. This allows us to re-use the heat produced by our brewing process, and which previously disappeared up the brewhouse chimney.
In our Managed Houses, we are trialling various energy reduction initiatives, ranging from LED lighting to solar panels. These trials are being appraised over the next year. The successes will be rolled out to the rest of the Managed House estate and, where appropriate, offered to our Business Partners.
Our brewery water is supplied mainly from a borehole on site. In Managed Houses, we have already carried out a major initiative by installing waterless urinals. This saves the equivalent of 10 Olympic size swimming pools of water every year. We are looking to make further changes in Managed Houses by introducing water saving devices when we refurbish a house, such as aerated shower heads and taps, and smaller toilet cisterns.
At the brewery, we have already taken some major steps to reduce waste:
- Our bottles now use 25% less glass.
- We recycle waste at the brewery, and have halved the amount sent to landfill over the last 18 months. Spent grain is sold to a local farmer for animal feed.
- We have an anaerobic digester at the brewery which helps deal with our waste.
In our Managed Houses, we have implemented new procedures to manage our stock better and reduce the amount of waste that we produce, eg. when preparing food. In addition, most houses recycle glass, cardboard and cooking oil. We are working with WRAP (a government-funded organisation) to identify ways to reduce our waste even more.
OTHER - TRANSPORT
We invest in our dray fleet to benefit from the efficiencies of modern engines. We minimise dray mileage by optimising the number of deliveries per trip, and use the drays to deliver things in addition to beer, such as post and cleaning materials. Wherever possible, we arrange for items to be returned from our public houses via the drays, known as “backhauling”. We have also revised our company car policy to incentivise a switch to green vehicles.
Corporate social responsibility is at the heart of everything we do. It is part of running a truly brilliant business – a great place to work that is loved by our team, guests and customers, and cherished by our communities.