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Cityserve scores National Award hat-trick

Published: Friday, 21st September 2018

Best service team catering service birmingham city council

The catering division behind many of Birmingham’s school meals has scooped a national catering award - for the third year running.

Cityserve, Birmingham City Council’s education catering division, retained its position as Best Catering Service Team at the APSE (Association for Public Service Excellence) Awards 2018.

The awards, open to all local authorities and their public sector partners, are designed to recognise excellence in local government frontline services across the UK.

For the third year running Cityserve won the ‘Best Service Team of the Year: Catering’ Award, beating off tough competition from five other local authorities.

The victory was announced at an awards ceremony at the APSE Annual Seminar in Edinburgh last week, where the Cityserve leadership team accepted the award on behalf of its staff who work across the region to provide 60,000 meals every day.

To make the shortlist, finalists had to demonstrate that they are actively implementing innovative ideas, supporting continuous improvement, and developing new strategies to deliver local services.

Cityserve showed this by highlighting how it has built its reputation as a social caterer without shareholders, which focuses on children and schools as citizen stakeholders, and has continued to develop at significant pace despite increasing competition and cost-pressures.

Its state of the art development kitchen was given as an example of how Cityserve engages with students to design healthy menus, alongside a brand-new Ofqual accredited Learning Centre where they invest in colleague development and service. Its strategy of commercial growth through a high-quality, healthy food provision and flexibility of services is now being strengthened by innovative technology solutions designed to save schools money; the imminent launch of its cashless ordering system, Cityserve:PAY will save schools thousands of pounds in administration and food waste costs. 

Brian Cape, Head of Commercial Development at Cityserve, said: “We are very proud to have been awarded this prestigious national accolade for the third year in a row. It’s a testament to our hard working colleagues during financially challenging times.  At Cityserve we are all about the kids, and the fact we are proven to have the best service team for the third year in a row, just goes to show we really do put them first.”

APSE Chief Executive Paul O’Brien said, "The winners of these awards are amongst the best at delivering outstanding local government frontline services. APSE works continually to encourage public service excellence and we are delighted that all our finalists and winning councils are so highly committed to delivering the best possible services for the benefit of their communities.”

Birmingham City Council were also APSE finalists in the following categories: Best Workforce Initiative; Best Commercialisation and Entrepreneurship Initiative; Best Service Team: Parks, Grounds and Horticultural Service

Cabinet Member for Finance and Resource Cllr Brett O’Reilly said:

“Cityserve is at the forefront of the business-like approach we are embedding in delivery across our services as part of our sustainable Council strategy. The fact that we were shortlisted across a number of categories is an indication of the significant progress we are making in doing this. To win this award for a third successive year is an incredible honour and a real endorsement of the enduring commercial approach that Cityserve takes – making the most of our assets and services to achieve better outcomes for Birmingham.”