One of the UK’s leading providers of workplace restaurants has announced the launch of a ‘Kitchen Club’, giving employees at several major UK firms access to virtual cooking lessons from professional chefs this month.
Eurest, part of Compass Group, is offering Kitchen Club as an employee engagement benefit.
It says initial feedback has been positive, with employees buoyed by a new experience and employers preferring the practical activity to purchasing external employee engagement programmes.
According to a survey of nearly 14,000 European workers, commissioned by Eurest, having a workplace restaurant is considered the third most important workplace benefit, while having an employee assistance or wellness programme is the fifth most important.
The addition of Kitchen Club to the Eurest portfolio is a unique way to support these findings, even for those not able to currently attend their workplace and workplace restaurant.
Kitchen Club teaches everything from knife skills to nutrition, with Eurest’s culinary director Ryan Holmes along with other company chefs and nutritionists leading employees through recipes virtually.
The events can be held either live, or as a pre-recorded session and act as an excellent morale booster.
Mr Holmes said: “Connecting people through food is incredibly fulfilling and exciting, especially with the UK’s ongoing Covid-19 restrictions making it harder for people to see each other and find entertaining ways to connect, engage and learn new skills.
“Employees genuinely enjoy learning about nutrition and improving their culinary skills. This also leads to healthier workplaces, where people are more aware of the nutritional content of what they’re eating.
“For employers it’s another way of showing employees they’ve considered their needs and want to support their wellbeing. Workers are going above and beyond this winter to keep the nation moving, and caterers need to do the same in order to support the national effort.”
Employees booked onto a Kitchen Club session receive a recipe card and preparation sheet, along with either a shopping list or hamper of ingredients.
They are also provided with a list of any equipment needed and tips for setting up. When the cook-a-long is live and interactive, there is also the opportunity to ask questions directly to the chefs.
The sessions are ideal for those working from home and keyworkers looking for something relaxing to do outside of work.