Online supermarket Ocado has been awarded second place in the ‘Employer of the Year’ category at the European Social Fund Awards as a result of its successful partnership with Ingeus.The partnership has seen the two organisations working closely together to get London’s long-term unemployed back into work.

Ocado has employed over 70 Ingeus clients since April, many of whom have been out of work for some time, often with complex needs. The partnership has been so successful that Ocado now uses Ingeus exclusively for all the recruitment at its White City depot.

The strength of the relationship between Ingeus and Ocado comes from shared values; both work closely with local communities, have a strong social ethic and are committed to the idea that, with the right support, everybody who wants to work can work. Both parties are delighted that their shared commitment to get London working has been recognised by the European Social Fund, and look forward to continuing to work together across the UK.

Harriet Sheppard, from Ingeus’ Employer Services team, said:
“It has been such a pleasure to work with a forward thinking, innovative and rewarding employer. Many of our clients have complex needs, and have been out of work for some time. Ocado has offered phenomenal support, at every stage of the recruitment process and beyond.”

Ocado has dramatically improved its retention rates, and credits Ingeus with a key role in this success. Although Ocado has a track record of working with unemployed people in the communities in which they operate, since working with Ingeus they have substantially increased the number of unemployed people that they employ and, crucially, retain. From the provision of extra training to providing flexible working options, Ocado has embraced the recommendations of Ingeus and has shown a real commitment to supporting local unemployed people into work.

Brian Parkin, Recruitment & Training, Ocado, commented:
“Ingeus fully understood what our needs were and after working very closely with them to create an ideal recruitment process, we have enjoyed tremendous success. As a result of the efficient screening by Ingeus, we have reduced the number of interviews we need to carry out and greatly improved our retention rate. We are looking forward to maintaining our fruitful partnership.”