The Inn Collection Group futureproofs hospitality talent with People Team appointment

The Inn Collection Group has created a new People Team to attract and invest in talent as they fly the flag for careers in hospitality.

The fast-growing pubs with rooms operator has bolstered its senior team by appointing Elizabeth Robertson as head of people and development and Siobhan Hodge as learning, development and integration manager. Their appointments come as the pubco launches a talent spotting drive to attract, engage and retain talent as its workforce swells alongside its growing site portfolio.

Winner of the coveted national Publican Awards’ Best Pub Employer (up to 500 employees) category in 2019 and 2020, The Inn Collection Group is keen to look at further investment in learning and development including apprenticeships, management training and career pathways. As the portfolio continues to expand the People Team will also be imbedding frameworks and policies with a people focus, as well as ramping up recognition schemes linked to group values.

Elizabeth Robertson joins the group after 14 years with independent retailer Fenwick Ltd as Head of HR and Training.

With a passion for leading and developing teams, Elizabeth said: “The Inn Collection Group piqued my interest. I kept reading about their growth journey in the media and their people credentials time after time”.

“They’re a company that wants to grow its people. It’s my job to create a framework where we can attract the best people as well as develop colleagues from within, which, in turn, results in an enhanced customer experience. Get the colleague experience right and the customer experience will follow.”

“Hospitality often gets bad press and can be seen as a transient place to work. Yet it has amazing career paths with rapid routes to management opportunities, covering diverse transferable skills such as finance, marketing and people management. I think its normal to underestimate the incredible stretch of skills people within the hospitality industry have, I want to make sure we recognise and improve this for our colleagues.

Elizabeth said: “I’m excited to be joining The Inn Collection Group at such a pivotal time as they continue their expansion and grow their workforce alongside this. I’m looking forward to developing our people so we’re an employer of choice in the north for hospitality.”

New learning, development and integration manager Siobhan Hodge joins The Inn Collection Group after 12 years with JD Wetherspoon. Siobhan, who excels at developing great people within the industry, said: “It’s about making people aware of the transferable skills you can acquire with a career in hospitality. The industry is accessible to everybody and as such we have so much scope to create perfect pub people teams. With the right frameworks and people centric attitudes we can cultivate the talent we have within.”

She added: “You can be a business manager in an exciting environment where no two days are ever the same. It is such a sociable, rewarding environment and pub teams are a support network like no other. I am very excited to join the Inn Collection Group to support the people vision within the ever-expanding portfolio”

Managing director for The Inn Collection Group Sean Donkin said: “Hospitality is going through a fundamental transition because of the perfect storm between Covid and Brexit, but also from preconceptions surrounding hospitality as a viable career prospect. That’s a stigma we want to blow out of the water.”

Donkin, who joined the group as a general manager before rising through the ranks to become managing director, said: “We’re a company that puts our people at the heart of what we do. It’s a win-win situation for everyone. We invest in them for the long term which is why we enjoy the success and growth we achieve with people who are motivated, highly skilled professionals who reap the benefits of excellent opportunities, salaries and rewards.

“We are excited to have brought in Elizabeth and Siobhan to spearhead our new People Team, whose HR calibre and innovative learning and development vision will set a new benchmark for hospitality opportunities in our group.”

The launch of the Alchemy-backed group’s People Team comes as the operator undergoes a new phase of business expansion, with further acquisitions and organic growth in the pipeline for its pubs with rooms operations across the north of England.