These organisations have shown a real commitment to investing in their people.
Ancient Technology Volunteers Association
Ascot Racecourse Ltd
Clear Mortgage Solutions (Mortgage Advice Bureau)
East Coast FM
Edwards Vacuum Ltd
Fifty Shades Greener
Gateway Community Media
Gravitas Recruitment Group
Hallmark Care Homes
Henry Ford Academy
IPG Health Medical Communications
LiNK Health Group
MKC Training Services Ltd
Mortgage Advice Bureau
Northern Care Alliance
Pret A Manger
Red Carnation Hotels (UK) Ltd
Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council
Royal Mail Group Ltd
Royal Mail Group Ltd
Severn Trent Academy
Using training to improve consistency and maintain quality
Pharmaceuticals and healthcare | 1000+ employees | London
Acacium is a leading global healthcare delivery partner consisting of 25 specialist businesses. It created its Better Together programme to create more consistency, maintain quality and adhere to core values across all businesses. The programme has been attended by more than 2500 employees and retention rates for those having attended the training are significantly higher than those for non-participants.
Apprenticeships integral to business operations
Manufacturing | 1000+ employees | Rotherham
Since achieving the Award in 2018, this manufacturing organisation’s apprenticeship programme has grown in importance and is an integral part of how the business operates. Sixteen apprenticeships are on offer and the number of employed apprentices has increased from 20 in 2018 to 230 in 2023. 32% of the company’s employees are current or former apprentices, recruitment is evenly split between male and female apprentices and 10% of recruits in 2023 are from BAME communities.
Reducing attrition through self-paced learning
Recruitment | 1000+ employees | Bracknell
Allegis provides talent acquisition services to fully outsourced workforce management delivery. It needed to redesign its Academy for new recruiters in order to create a self-paced experience where trainees took responsibility for their own learning and also to address high annual attrition rates. Since launching, 144 recruiters have been through the programme and the time taken to graduate has decreased. Attrition has also reduced from 80 leavers in 2021 to 38 in 2022.
Upskilling women into leadership roles
Construction and engineering | 1000+ employees | London
This leading infrastructure services and engineering company identified the Women@Amey network to attract and retain women in a male-dominated industry. A leadership programme aimed at women with the potential to be leaders was developed and 58 women have completed the programme with 77% being promoted. The number of women in the business has increased from 25% to 30% post programme and the number of women in senior leadership positions has increased from 14% to 18%.
Upskilling volunteers to ensure survival
Charities and not-for-profit | <50 employees | Wimborne
This volunteer-led Association exists to support Dorset Council with the upkeep of a historically recreated site demonstrating life from the Stone Age to the Vikings. It needed to make considerable operational savings and relies on volunteers to maintain the site and raise income. A 3-year strategy focusing on recruitment, upskilling and skills transfer was launched, active volunteer numbers have increased from 15 to 48 and the site has just achieved its largest annual income.
Using training as a USP in a competitive marketplace
Pharmaceuticals and healthcare | 250-999 employees | Bristol
This leading independent physiotherapy provider launched the Ascenti Physiotherapy Clinical Development Programme as a way of upskilling and retaining its existing employees and attracting new physiotherapists in a tight labour market. Employee headcount has increased from 197 in 2020 to 253 in 2023, patient satisfaction has risen to 95% and clinical effectiveness is consistently measured at over 91%.
Delivering the core values of the ‘Ascot Way’
Culture, entertainment and events | 50-250 employees plus 1000+ contractors | Ascot
With the loss of competent staff following the Covid-19 pandemic, Ascot Racecourse Ltd established a comprehensive training programme to maintain the ‘Ascot Way’ values. 3,599 employees and contractors attended the training, with the values being demonstrated by staff and are well used during race days. Profitability exceeded targets in 2022, Ascot 2023 has sold out and commitment to training following the programme’s success is evidenced through a 10% increase in the training budget for 2023.
Developing management skills to facilitate growth
Education and training | 250-999 employees | Surrey
This independent school introduced the Middle Manager Training Programme to enable managers to oversee their own staff and resources effectively and support the growth of the organisation. With manager attrition rates falling to zero, a rise in employee satisfaction levels, and the freeing up of senior managers to focus on more strategic priorities, the programme’s success has resulted in it rollout to the teaching staff middle manager population.
Upskilling staff to meet moving market trends
Manufacturing | 250-999 employees | London
This personal skincare organisation developed an in-house level 4 qualification to facilitate the delivery of high quality services amongst its staff. The programme has resulted in 20 educator staff being trained, subsequently delivering training to 1055 recipients, with 100% of participants being confident in delivering microneedling and chemical peels. Cost savings for internal delivery have been substantial, at 30% of external provider cost, and revenue achieved by participants far outweighs the proceeds of those who have not received training.
Growing its own talent
Education and training | 1000+ employees | Durham
In 2018 the University wanted to change the way its staff perceived career development and launched its Succession Planning programme which includes bespoke training and 1-1 mentor support. The programme has continued to open up opportunities for lower-grade employees, giving them the confidence and skills to progress their careers. 28 staff have completed the programme and are all still employed at the University with 14 having achieved a 1-3 grade promotion.
Enhancing opportunities to support diversity in media
Charities and not-for-profit | <50 employees | Haddington
This award-winning community radio station based in East Lothian, Scotland, achieved an Award in 2017 for a training programme committed to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion that brings disabled people and the disadvantaged into broadcasting. Since 2017, opportunities have been expanded for disabled people and school children with challenges, with 15 people being trained every year. 32% of staff are registered disabled, compared to the BBC’s 8%, and the station’s audience has significantly increased, with it now broadcasting globally.
Implementing a consistent leadership approach
Manufacturing | 1000+ employees | Burgess Hill
This Sussex based industrial engineering organisation, which is part of the Atlas Copco Group, specialises in providing vacuum and abatement services to the manufacturing sector. It launched the People Leadership Essentials Programme to develop a consistent leadership approach to better support the growth of the organisation. 116 managers have participated in the training and there has been a 44% increase in observed overall effectiveness as a result.
Practising what it preaches through action-based learning
Education and training | <50 employees | Liscannor
This small company which educates organisations on how to reduce their carbon footprint through changing their behaviours showcases its own commitment to learning through its tailored employee induction programme. Green Skills for Life is central to the training, staff receive multiple opportunities to apply learning to real situations and as staff numbers and knowledge has increased, there has been a steady increase in turnover.
Innovative virtual reality training to improve site safety
Construction and engineering | 1000+ employees | UK Wide
This full delivery construction contractor identified through data analysis that there was a risk of accidents from objects falling from height on building sites. It invested in Virtual Reality (VR) training to provide an authentic learning experience using real sites in the design and its own employees as actors. Outcomes include a 50% reduction in ‘high potential’ accidents and the company is expanding its training offer by investing in a further 2 VR modules.
Training to support hard-to-reach individuals
Media and publishing | <50 employees + 100 volunteers | Basildon
Since achieving an Award in 2020, this local community radio station has developed its in-house media training programme focusing on unemployed and hard-to-reach groups, to include mental health training. 500 people have been trained since 2020, with many using their new skills to become volunteers at the radio station, ensuring it can function 365 days a year. 100 unemployed participants have also gained employment and Gateway has been able to secure an increasing number of new contracts.
Creating a talent pipeline by supporting trainees’ progression
Recruitment | 50-249 employees | London and Manchester
Gravitas Recruitment is a global, specialist recruitment company connecting niche talent with employers. Initially achieving an Award in 2017, the business has continued to invest in its Senior Development Consultant programme developing trainee consultants to progress to senior consultant level and providing a future talent pipeline to management roles. 70 trainees have completed the programme with 62% remaining with the business and average time to promotion has halved in the past 3 years.
Uplifting staff engagement and reducing attrition rates
Food and beverages | 1000+ employees | Sheffield
This convenience food manufacturer implemented the Line & Logistics Coordinator Framework programme to ensure that its 1000 Line and Logistics Coordinator employees were able to effectively support new starters. With a focus on transcending language and cultural barriers, the training has been completed by 382 employees and 15% have since been promoted. As well as leading to cost-savings, attrition rates following the training have also reduced from between 20-30% to 4%.
Empowering staff and enhancing retention
Pharmaceuticals and healthcare | 1000+ employees | Billericay
With the aim of maintaining staff morale and increasing staff retention following Brexit and the Covid-19 pandemic, this family-run provider of residential care introduced the Leading in an Empower Organisation programme. The General Managers within six care homes completed the programme, resulting in improved staff retention, savings in agency recruitment fees of over £76,000, and a reduced need to recruit overseas workers. Greater staff empowerment, enhanced morale and communication have benefited the staff and the residents.
Training leaders to empower their teams
Recruitment | 1000+ employees | London
This large recruitment organisation created the International Leadership & Management Programme to provide leaders with the skills to empower others and be creative in finding solutions to customers’ complex people challenges. Of the 29 people completing the programme, 16 have been promoted and engagement data shows increased staff satisfaction with how the organisation is leading on the ability to manage change.
Equipping leaders to manage change effectively
Education and training | <50 employees | Daventry
This Academy, which provides training services to Ford dealerships, devised a training programme to equip leaders with the skills to navigate change in an industry facing considerable disruption. Based on 145 leadership competencies, the programme has been undertaken by 130 employees. Many graduates from the programme remain with the business and feedback includes changes in leadership styles and new staff induction processes being transformed.
Building mid-level management skills
Travel, transport and logistics | 1000+ employees | Birmingham
High Speed 2 (HS2) is the largest infrastructure programme in Europe and the first major railway to be built north of London in 150 years. As part of a capability assessment, the Management Discovery Programme was created to build mid-level management skills and embed a new leadership framework. 294 managers have completed the training and this has led to improved evidence of how managers communicate change and deliver performance feedback.
Building a diverse, client-ready technical workforce
Technology | 1000+ employees | Sale
This IT service management organisation has continued to grow a successful in-house technical apprenticeship programme which provides client ready and revenue generating apprentices. The programme’s return on investment is evidenced through billable fees that cover the cost of the apprentice three times over and a retention rate of 95% of former and current apprentices. With 25% BAME apprentices compared to 6% in 2017 and 41% females compared to 33%, a more diverse workforce is also being established.
Delivering sustainable training to new recruits
Pharmaceuticals and healthcare | 250-999 employees | Macclesfield
IPG Health Medical Communications creates inspiring communication solutions that bring scientific data to life. It introduced the FUEL (Future Experts and Leaders) programme as a centralised entry level talent recruitment programme training new recruits. The programme equips trainees with tailored skills and experience and 102 Associates have completed the training, in the UK, with 55 of these gaining promotion. 100% of Associates state that the programme has met their expectations.
Developing the Leaders of Tomorrow: Strengthening the management population with apprenticeships
Pharmaceuticals and healthcare | 1000+ employees | Harrogate
This leading global life sciences organisation launched an apprenticeship programme focused on team leaders and managers to fill a skills gap, increase diversity and make company savings. 54 learners have been through the programme to date, with 44% receiving promotions, a 100% success at End Point Assessment and a reduction in staff turnover from 34% to 9%. The programme’s success has resulted in the model being rolled out across the globe.
Masters in Biopharmaceutical Development: Creating a skilled talent pipeline
Pharmaceuticals and healthcare | 1000+ employees | Harrogate
Since achieving an Award in 2020, Labcorp has continued to develop a strong talent pipeline through its delivery of an MSc in Biopharmaceutical Development in partnership with Leeds University. 97 graduates have completed the programme with 70% being promoted and Labcorp has used the training design to create a shorter in-house training programme which has been delivered to 400 employees.
Yorkshire Women’s Empowerment Network: Promoting opportunities through developing supportive networks
Pharmaceuticals and healthcare | 1000+ employees | Harrogate
Dedicated to breaking down female employees’ barriers to success whilst supporting learning and development, Labcorp achieved an Award for its Women in Science Network programme, now the Yorkshire WEN (Women’s Empowerment Network) and has demonstrated continued commitment to this programme. Not only has the network been a catalyst for global policy review and difficult conversations around menopause and the gender pay gap, membership has also increased, 75% of core team members have been promoted and 70% of participants reported career progression.
Developing young people’s career aspirations
Education and training | 50-249 employees | Chatham
MKC Training Services Ltd was established to provide a wide range of core engineering skills to the Army’s Royal Engineers. Training at Level 2 through to Master’s Degree level is provided to officers and soldiers of Military Engineering. Through accessing Kickstart funding and with the aim of diversifying recruits to address an ageing workforce issue, MKC Training has successfully provided 14 young people with training resulting in 57% gaining full or fixed term contracts.
Creating more sustainable and efficient training
Banking, insurance and finance | 1000+ employees | Derby
Since achieving an Award in 2019 for its MAB Academy, the Mortgage Advice Bureau needed to revise the delivery of its training to meet growing demand within its learning and development budget. Its subsequent 4-week online programme and mentorship have been completed by 127 people since late 2021. Outcomes have included substantial cost savings of 69.1%, the ability to accommodate more delegates, improved compliance grades compared to the old Academy, increased productivity and 22% revenue growth.
Investing in thorough induction training
Banking, insurance and finance | 50-249 employees | Edinburgh
Prior to 2019, this mortgage and protection broker identified that new Mortgage Protection Experts were not meeting the required standard for administrative tasks which led to a knock on effect for others. A 6-week induction programme delivered online was introduced and over 100 people have completed it. New starter retention rates have increased considerably exceeding targets and there has been an increase in new business secured.
Meeting a regional skills gap by upskilling unemployed people
Technology | 50-249 employees | Norwich
Netmatters specialises in web design, bespoke software and digital marketing and achieved an Award in 2020 for its innovative Scion Coalition Scheme. In the past three years it has further developed how it trains developers to address a regional skills shortage, growing the business by 20% annually, offering opportunities for those who may not otherwise receive them and training 128 developers, most of whom either get a job with Netmatters or get support to find work elsewhere in the industry. A total of 169 unemployed people have been accepted onto the scheme to-date.
Equipping leaders to be human-centric
Public sector | 1000+ employees | Salford
This NHS Foundation Trust designed the Accelerated Leader Development Programme to help create a new culture, introduce new concepts and refresh skills in a non-hierarchical environment for leaders across the Trust. The blended training programme has been delivered to 2,667 individuals and 91% of participants agree that they understand the Trust’s Leader pledge. Staff survey results also show improvements in indicators linked to line managers following the training.
Implementing an innovative approach to improve staff retention
Hospitality | 1000+ employees | Berkhamsted
The Oakman Group faced a retention challenge with new employees. The business decided to implement a new induction training strategy which included onboarding and coaching delivered by internal ‘training ninjas’. Trainees progress through the ninja belt progression process and it has also been embedded into leadership pathways. Employee retention has increased and the knock on effect includes increased spend per customer and higher guest opinion ratings.
Surpassing graduate promotion targets
Professional services | <50 employees | London
Faced with recruitment challenges and with a focus on building a strong, collaborative and unified workforce, this specialist technology recruitment agency launched the Orama Solutions Sales Academy to grow its own senior talent. 62 people have now been trained through the Academy, initial targets of 60% promotion for graduates have been exceeded at 67% and 62% of current employees came through the Academy.
An ethical approach to delivering excellent customer service
Construction and engineering | 1000+ employees | Nationwide
With a focus on becoming Britain’s leading homebuilder, Persimmon Homes developed the Sales Excellence Programme to enhance customer service, maintain an ethical sales approach and advance employees’ sales careers. 122 sales advisors have participated to date, with delegate attrition rates falling from 20% to 7.8%, NPS scores rising from 2.4 to 4.2, and recruitment and marketing savings due to reduced turnover.
Upskilling employees to achieve business sustainability
Recruitment | 250-999 employees | Meriden
This large, independent recruitment organisation launched the Sales Ignite in-house training programme during the Covid-19 pandemic. Focused on upskilling consultants to increase business, achieve profit and establish a foundation for growth, the programme has led to gross profit targets being exceeded, a 677% return on training investment and a year-on-year sales increase.
Learner-centred focus to upskill new recruits
Recruitment | 250-999 employees | Bristol
In order to increase market share and meet its ambitious growth target, this specialist recruitment agency revamped its existing 6-week induction programme for new recruits. It established a fully blended 6-month onboarding pathway focusing on a learner-centred coaching-based approach. 105 trainees have completed the programme since 2021 and attrition has reduced from 27% to 14% with average time to consultant promotion also reducing from 362 to 201 days.
Creation of Academy offering clear development pathways
Hospitality | 1000+ employees | London
In order to reach its ambitious growth targets, this organisation launched the Pret Academy as a way of developing existing employees and providing clear career pathways. The training which uses a blended model and includes allergen training, has been undertaken by 2847 employees and outcomes include increased safety scores, greater staff retention figures and sales exceeding targets.
Creating competent managers through high quality training
Hospitality | 1000+ employees | London
This collection of family-run hotels achieved an Award in 2017 and went on to gain a revalidation in 2020. Since then it has further developed its Graduate Management programme with 53 participants commencing the training in the past 3 years. Recruitment processes onto the programme have been adapted to focus on resilience and adaptability and all participants from the 2020/21 cohort have been promoted with some former participants now in senior management roles in flagship hotels.
Exceeding apprenticeship targets
Public sector | 1000+ employees | Redcar
Since achieving an Award in 2019, this council has expanded its apprenticeship provision using it as a key means of meeting workforce and business needs whilst fully utilising the apprenticeship levy. The Council exceeds its annual target of 2.3% staff completing apprenticeships year-on-year and 50% of apprentices gained employment at the Council after completing their training in 2021-22.
Ensuring consistent high-quality training and delivery of care
Pharmaceuticals and healthcare | <50 employees | Waterloo
This homecare franchise introduced a caregivers training programme and an accredited Train the Trainer programme to establish in-house training for franchise owners and ensure consistency in training and care. 150 owners and managers have completed the programme and conducted refresher training for 6,364 caregivers. Not only have participants achieved a nationally recognised qualification, but savings have been made in external training costs, and 92% of clients report confidence in caregivers’ understanding of their needs.
Providing life-changing opportunities for marginalised people
Professional services | <50 employees | Thrapston
This arboricultural organisation decided to recruit and train people marginalised by society, with no prior knowledge of arboriculture, as a way of addressing industry skills shortages. Rockleigh provides highly-inclusive support and has trained 6 new staff enabling the business to double its recruitment targets. This has led to increased turnover and the business winning new commercial contracts whilst building a passionate and loyal workforce.
Inspiring a Sales Mindset for Growth: Generating new revenue streams in periods of change
Travel, transport and logistics | 1000+ employees | Nationwide
With a drive to adapt to market changes, establish stronger relationships with customers and identify new sources of revenue, Royal Mail launched the Inspiring a Sales Mindset for Growth Programme. The programme has been completed by 75 sales account managers, generated 20 new customer value propositions and won 67 opportunities, with a further 51 opportunities in the pipeline. More focused and productive workplace practices have also been embedded.
Business to Business (B2B) Sales Professional Apprenticeship Programme: Attracting new talent and promoting a learning environment
Travel, transport and logistics | 1000+ employees | Nationwide
With a maturing workforce, Royal Mail established the Business-to-Business Sales Professional Apprenticeship Programme to develop a sales talent pipeline and complement the existing team with the introduction of new perspectives and skills. 25 apprentices have gained BSc degrees, apprentice retention levels are above market average at 70% and the age profile of those under 30 has risen from 6.4% to 8.2%. The programme’s success has also resulted in additional apprenticeship programmes being developed across the organisation.
Creating a shared vision of equality
Charities and not-for-profit | 250-999 employees + 4,000 volunteers | Nationwide
As a charity that supports disabled people and their families, Scope was keen to address the development needs of its staff to support its vision to build a strong community of disabled and non-disabled people. 850 participants have now completed its Coaching in a Coffee Cup programme, resulting in improvements in key engagement scores, an increased NPS by 4%, a 19% increase in staff feeling supported to gain required skills and knowledge and a 6.5% rise in income through 18% fewer retail shops.
Demonstrating effective succession planning through establishing a talent pipeline
Energy, chemicals and utilities | 1000+ employees | Coventry
Faced with a potential skills gap due to changing staff demographics, as well as a scarcity of water industry specific apprenticeship standards, Severn Trent developed a Level 2 Water Process Operative standard and became an employer provider. The projected talent gap of 121 people has been mitigated by 140 apprentices in the pipeline, retention rates are at 86% and there has been a 100% pass rate against a national average of 53.4%. Savings have also been made and new apprenticeship routes are currently being developed through new Trailblazer Groups.
Investing in the next generation of engineering talent
Manufacturing | 50-250 employees | Chatteris
Since achieving an Award in 2020, this SME engineering business has continued to invest in pathways to engineering careers for local young people, with the development of their apprenticeship programme and the launch of the North Cambs Training Centre. 42% of the current workforce started as apprentices, there has been a reduction in the age profile from 54 to 40 and retention beyond year 2 of the programme has increased from 50% to 78%
Creating work harmony and enhancing productivity
Professional services | 50-250 employees | Bollington
This business-to-business marketing agency launched the Universal Knowledge Foundation with the aim of increasing productivity and becoming an excellent place to work. The innovative and creative online training has been completed by more than 50% of staff to date. Time spent on development has increased from 1% to 5% with new personal development plans, revenue per hour and profit have both increased by 10% and there is evidence of career advancement for several employees.
Maintaining training excellence during growth
Education and training | <50 employees + 53 consultants | York
This learning and development company launched the Training 4 Influence programme to achieve a consistent approach to training their trainers whilst expanding their organisation. 53 people have now completed the programme, which encourages participants to make use of their lived experience of trauma and difficulties. Return on investment is evidenced through growth in turnover, which has almost doubled year on year. Customer numbers have also grown from 4 in 2017 to 80 in 2022, with the organisation now operating nationally.
Committed to delivering outstanding apprenticeship training
Education and Training | <50 employees | Chatham
Since achieving an Award in 2020, this training provider which provides apprenticeship training to the hospitality sector has evolved with a new leadership structure and enhanced working relationships with its employers. Umbrella has continued to adapt course content: 78% of its apprentices achieve a distinction and it has a 100% apprentice pass rate at end point assessment stage.
Attracting talent in response to high growth
Recruitment | 50-249 employees | St Albans
This scaling SME is passionate about retaining high standards of integrity as it grows. Its 8 week inspiring trainee programme was developed in response it its expansion and enables consultants to hit the ground running leading to increased annual revenue for the business. Headcount has grown by 124% in 4 years, the speed at which trainees achieve promotion is constantly being beaten and an attractive training offer is helping this organisation to attract and retain talent.
An apprenticeship committed to enhancing diversity
Professional services | 1000+ employees | Nationwide
With a focus on recruiting and developing entry-level advisers to enhance business growth and provide a diverse talent pool, this global risk management, insurance and advisory organisation has continued to develop its Level 4 Insurance Professional Apprenticeship programme, increasing underrepresented talent and managing retention levels. Numbers of female staff have increased from 30% in 2017 to 50% in 2022, mature apprentices from 20% to 49% and ethnic diversity has increased from 1% to 33%. New apprentice retention is also above the market average at 80%.
Exceeding retention targets through apprenticeships
Travel, transport and logistics | 1000+ employees | Leeds
Since achieving an Award in 2019, this leading independent leasing, vehicle outsourcing and fleet management provider, has continued to develop its apprenticeship programme, delivering a valuable recruitment pipeline to support the organisation’s growth ambitions. The number of pathways has expanded to include legal and financial routes, the programme has continued to exceed its retention target of 85% and 36% of apprentices have been promoted since the programme started in 2016.
How to apply
Interested in applying? Find out more about entering your organisation in this year’s Princess Royal Training Awards.