What do Oakman Inns, Waitrose, Barclays, BAe and the Co-Op all have in common?


They are among the 40 recipients of The Princess Royal’s Training Award, organised by the City & Guilds Group. Those recipients cover the full spectrum of HR responsibilities including public and private sector businesses and are from industries that include hospitality, healthcare, finance and manufacturing.

The exceptional award-winning businesses, selected from a list of 116, will be honoured by HRH The Princess Royal at a ceremony due to take place this autumn. The award recognises Oakman Inns for creating a lasting impact by successfully linking their skills development needs to business performance. Each of the 116 applications were assessed against three Hallmarks of Excellence by the Princess Royal Training Awards Commission, which comprised of HRH The Princess Royal and seven leading figures in the business and training community.

Commenting on this year’s recipients, Chris Jones, Chief Executive of the City & Guilds Group said: “From household brands to leading charities, employers of all sizes across the UK are seeing real and tangible benefits of training and developing their people. The Princess Royal Training Awards provide both recognition and the opportunity to share best practice and its impact. I congratulate the 40 successful organisations who achieved the standard required by the Award in 2017. They are worthy recipients of this prestigious and rigorous royal award and we are delighted to be able to deliver it through the City & Guilds Group.”

Now in its second year, the Princess Royal Training Awards honours employers in the UK who have created outstanding training and skills development programmes which have resulted in exceptional commercial benefits. The Princess Royal Training Awards recognise the achievement of a standard of excellence rather than selecting overall winners.

Applications were assessed against three Hallmarks of Excellence:

  • Training and learning and development is integral to business performance
  • The programme is delivered efficiently and effectively
  • The programme has an impact on the success of the organisation and its people

Oakman Inn’s HR Director, Jill Scatchard, said: “This is a recognition of the time and effort that Oakman Inns has invested in creating our in-house online training academy – Oakmanology – which involves everyone. Its skill development modules are taken by everyone from the main board down and since we introduced it four years ago, it has helped reduce our staff turnover by 43%.”

Oakman’s CEO, Peter Borg-Neal added: “We are thrilled to discover that we are the only pub group recognized by the Awards Commission. We are a people business and employ an average of 40 at each of our sites. We want them to be passionate and proud of what they do and having just completed on our 20th pub, we are committed to continuing the development of our range of training schemes so that we not only produce the managers of the future but give each one of our team members an opportunity to ‘learn a living’.”