OCS Emirates receive RoSPA recognition.

We are proud to share that our colleagues at OCS Emirates, situated in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, have achieved a Gold Award for Excellence in Health and Safety by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA)!

RoSPA Awards are internationally recognised as the most sought after accolade in the health and safety industry, and businesses who have earned this achievement recognised as world-leaders in health and safety.

This achievement not only showcases our commitment to high standards but also underscores our responsibility towards fostering a workplace where safety is paramount. We believe that a safe working environment is the foundation for productivity, innovation, and success.

Well done to each and every colleague who made this happen!

“It is outstanding to be recognised to this standard on a global platform and is a testament to our unwavering commitment to creating a safe and secure working environment for our employees, clients and end users.”

Michael Nicholas

Managing Director, OCS Emirates

As we celebrate this milestone, we remain committed to continuous improvement and innovation in our health and safety practices. Our journey doesn’t end here; it’s a stepping stone towards even greater achievements.

Here’s to a safer and brighter future for OCS!

OCS Colleague Lisa Byrne is Empowering the Liberties

Nestled in the heart of Dublin’s vibrant Liberties, a remarkable story of compassion and community dedication takes centre stage. Lisa Byrne, a valued member of the OCS team, is not only a native of the Liberties but also dedicates her expertise to the local community while working at the Guinness Storehouse within OCS’ cleaning division. While her journey may seem similar to many of us, Lisa’s life narrative transcends the ordinary, exemplifying the true spirit of selflessness.

Beyond her role at OCS, Lisa plays a pivotal role as a founder and volunteer with the Liberty Soup Run, a community volunteer group in Dublin 8 with a mission to extend a lifeline to those experiencing homelessness and families on their journey out of it.

This heart-warming initiative, initiated in 2019 by Lisa’s husband, Cristopher O’Reilly, has undergone a remarkable transformation. It began as a humble table offering a modest array of sandwiches and biscuits. Today, it stands as a sprawling city-wide operation. Lisa, Christopher, and a dedicated team of over 30 volunteers invest their time and energy seven days a week, providing a range of support services, meals, clothing, toiletries, and other essential items to those in dire need.

Each Thursday, you’ll find Lisa and her young family at the Liberty Soup Run stall on Thomas Street, distributing food parcels, hot beverages, and essential items to Dublin’s homeless community. Additionally, the Liberty Soup Run have a Walking Outreach Team to reach individuals who are unable to make the journey to Thomas Street, and the Liberty Soup Run van is out on the streets of Dublin every evening, offering the same vital supports. It’s important to note that the Liberty Soup Run doesn’t rely on government funding and heavily depends on the generosity of the public for donations and support.

For Christopher, the larger goal is to initiate long-term change and provide treatment for those they assist. “Breaking the cycle” for many individuals grappling with addiction is a crucial step towards permanent homelessness solutions. Christopher has already played a pivotal role in getting over 100 individuals into treatment centres, and his next aspiration is to establish his own rehabilitation clinic. He believes that it’s not just about feeding them; it’s about giving them a purpose and getting them off the streets for good.

Lisa’s story and her work serve as a poignant reminder that even amidst our daily responsibilities, each of us possesses the potential to be a catalyst for positive change within our communities. Her remarkable journey embodies the transformative power of compassion and unwavering dedication to a better world.

For more information on how you can support the Liberty Soup Run and its various initiatives, please visit their official website at https://www.facebook.com/liberty.souprun.9

Some of Liberty Soup Run volunteers ready for action.

OCS awarded double Gold by RoSPA for exceptional health and safety achievements

OCS, one of the world’s leading international facilities service providers, has been honoured with the highly esteemed Gold RoSPA (Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents) Award for its outstanding commitment to Health and Safety.

OCS was awarded a Gold RoSPA for its National Grid Vegetation and Industrial Painting contracts, where they consistently demonstrated exemplary health and safety standards implementing proactive measures to identify and mitigate potential risks across its operations. OCS are committed to safe working on every site, every day, and their non-complicated approach is combined with proactive management at all levels to ensure occupational health and safety are treated as a core value.

John Prowse, National Operations Director at OCS said, “Safety is a key priority for all operations at OCS. By achieving the Gold Award, we have proven our commitment to safeguarding our colleagues, customers and the public from potential harm, and have set a benchmark for others in the industry to follow.

“We are committed to ensuring safety plays a key role in every facet of the business. We recognise this requires a sustained commitment and active involvement at all levels – from the board, to managers, support teams and frontline colleagues. This has helped to create the necessary conditions for high standards in safety performance and continual improvements towards an injury-free workplace.”

“Accidents at work and work-related ill health cause major disruption and can significantly impact an individual’s quality of life. That’s why good safety performance deserves to be recognised and rewarded.

We are thrilled that OCS has won two Gold RoSPA Awards and would like to congratulate them on showing an unwavering commitment to keeping their employees and customers safe from accidental harm and injury.”

Julia Small

RoSPA’s Achievements Director

The RoSPA Awards recognise organisations that have successfully implemented and maintained comprehensive health and safety management systems. Entrants are rigorously assessed on various criteria including accident prevention, risk assessment, employee training and engagement.

The Gold RoSPA Award adds to the growing list of accolades and recognitions OCS has received for its commitment to excellence. As a company, OCS has been recognised with 12 RoSPA awards in 2023 and remains steadfast in its pursuit of continuous improvement and will continue to invest in health and safety initiatives to ensure the well-being of its workforce and all stakeholders.

OCS receive social value commendation at ERSA Employability Awards 2023

OCS were honoured to receive a social value commendation at the ERSA Employability Awards 2023.

We always aim to be our best, delivering the best partnerships and best services every time. It takes a hard-working, knowledgeable and compassionate team to provide the services and initiatives at OCS and we are extremely proud of our commendation.

The ERSA Employability Awards celebrate best practice in the employment support sector and demonstrate the hard work and dedication of those working to improve the lives of jobseekers, communities and the wider workforce.

We were also thrilled to have been nominated by Ingeus for the ‘Employer Partnership of the Year Award’.

Unlocking potential: placing people into work with OCS

The nomination

We are committed to being a responsible employer and building a diverse and inclusive workforce reflective of the communities we serve. We have an established ‘Placing People into Work’ programme dedicated to changing lives by providing meaningful employment to people from vulnerable groups and pathways for development for all our colleagues.

Ingeus and OCS work closely together to develop and refine tailored recruitment processes for each contract. By tailoring the pre-selection process, we ensure that candidates are equipped with everything they need to help them succeed in work. This includes making sure candidates have the necessary documents, information and training ahead of being interviewed, and that support mechanisms are in place for new recruits once they are in work.

Ingeus is now supporting us to fill vacancies for Court Tribunal and Security Officers (CTSO) in London and Greater Manchester. Together we have developed and refined a recruitment process, established service level agreements, and are now delivering exceptional results. In the last such recruitment exercise there were 20 candidates put forward for interview who secured job offers.

To help prepare candidates for interview Ingeus works with OCS to:

  • Source candidates with the right skills and aptitudes for the role
  • Deliver employer information sessions
  • Fund participants Security Industry Association (SIA) licences
  • Deliver a bespoke 3-day CTSO routeway course (designed by OCS)
  • Arrange a visit to a local court
  • Prepare documents for the enhanced security vetting processes

All candidates who successfully complete the CTSO routeway course are put forward for interview.

In the first recruitment round, Ingeus Employer Account Manager Farwa spent several weeks calling 160 potential applicants to see whether the role would suit them. She narrowed the search down to 12 people who attended a three-day Routeway Course devised by Ingeus to explain the job in detail. Seven people were offered roles, four of whom are female.

“There wasn’t a dry eye in the building – people were jumping up and down with delight after getting the jobs,” she recalls. “An established company had given them a chance and you couldn’t help but feel the emotion in the room.”

In undertaking this innovative and tailored approach to recruitment through Ingeus, we are attracting candidates who would not typically apply for our vacancies. In doing so we are challenging role stereotypes (gender, age, ethnicity etc.) and creating a stronger workforce which is more reflective of the communities we work within.

Stephen Kerr, Senior Regional Manager, OCS, said the partnership had been instrumental in supporting our drive to attract women and others currently under-represented in the security industry.

“Working with Ingeus on our social value recruitment process, we have been able to recruit talented people into our workforce who have unique experiences and abilities,” he said. “In our role at HM Courts and Tribunals Service, showing our customers genuine empathy in difficult circumstances is a key skill and our Ingeus recruits have that in abundance.”

Ann-Marie Conlon-Taylor, OCS Social Value Manager, HMCTS contract added: “Working with Ingeus helps us access people who have faced barriers to work, but who are being properly supported in a professional manner into employment. We were very impressed with the calibre of applicants put forward.”

Mobilising cleaning team at short notice for stadium gig

The customer

The Coventry Building Society Arena is owned by the Frasers Group, and hosts a multitude of events throughout the year. From being the home stadium for Coventry City FC to hosting live music concerts, exhibitions and conferences, the venue is a continual hive of activity.

The challenge

In the summer of 2022, the facility underwent some major redevelopment work to refurbish the boardroom and executive boxes. With the final stage of work still ongoing and a board event due to take place in the new area in under a week, the Arena’s incumbent cleaning contractor wasn’t able to fulfil a deep clean – leaving the Arena with a serious challenge. 

While the OCS team had worked with Frasers Group before, we had never worked on the Coventry Building Society Arena, and were asked to mobilise a team of eight cleaners within three days to conduct a Saturday deep clean.

 

The solution

By using our time and attendance software system, we were immediately able to contact all staff in the local area across all of our divisions to gauge availability to work at the Arena on the Saturday. Very quickly, we were able to mobilise a team ready to ensure the new facilities were spotless. 

With rubble still on the floor, the team was on-site for around five hours, cleaning everything from walls, windows and floors to big screens, coordinating with and working around the builders as the last stages of building work were completed

The outcome

The cleaning work was completed more quickly than the customer expected, and when they arrived to inspect the site, they were incredibly impressed. As they’d never worked with us before, they didn’t know what to expect, and they were hugely grateful – not only that we’d been able to mobilise a team so quickly, but also because of the quality of the job. 

By ensuring the facility was clean, safe and hygienic, the event the Arena had booked in for 36 hours later was able to go ahead. 

Edinburgh Airport appoints OCS to support passengers with reduced mobility

Edinburgh Airport has chosen OCS, the leading international facilities service provider, to ensure that passengers with reduced mobility (PRMs) receive specialist support in their journey through the airport. It is part of its commitment to providing all passengers with excellent customer service and a seamless journey.

Under the terms of the agreement OCS will provide a 24/7 continuous service every day including public and bank holidays, ensuring assisted safe passage through the airport (departures and arrivals) to and from the airplane to defined arrival/onward journey points, working closely with airlines and handling agents. The service includes covering assistance with set down points or pick up points to check-in; registration at check-in and with security processes; support with boarding, disembarking and with missed or delayed flights.

The service is underpinned by bespoke technology that enables passengers to register once and then receive a personalised service each time they fly in or out of Edinburgh Airport based on their previous preferences and requirements – where possible with the same team member. This has also proven to reduce the number of passengers who do not book assistance in advance ensuring a better service for all.

A team of over 130 colleagues will transfer to OCS under TUPE and immediately undertake a rigorous, bespoke training programme that has been developed at Glasgow Airport, Southampton Airport and Bristol Airport where the company delivers a similar service. They will also benefit from broader career development and job opportunities, in line with the company’s values of giving colleagues the tools to enable them to thrive and be the best they can be.

“The number of PRMs travelling is growing steadily so understanding the requirements and potential issues is of increasing importance to both airlines and airports alike. Our team members are often the first and last touchpoints at the airport and we ensure that they are knowledgeable, empathetic, and engaging, with a clear objective to deliver the best possible customer service.”

Richard Marshall

Managing Director, OCS

“We are proud of our Very Good rating for our PRM and Special Assistance provision and we want to ensure that we provide a service that grants everyone the same access and experience no matter the circumstances. OCS’s experience within the aviation industry will allow us to maintain that high standard and work together to make improvements where we can.”

Ross Gilpin

Contract & Operational Manager at Edinburgh Airport

OCS Wins Top Awards for Environmental Best Practice at Bluewater

Three times award winner at the Green Apple Awards

OCS has been awarded Gold, Silver and Bronze at the Green Apple Awards for Environmental Best Practice in recognition of its work at retail and leisure destination Bluewater in Kent.

For the past 7 years OCS has delivered a full portfolio of security, cleaning, mechanical and electrical, concierge, landscaping, and management and administration services at Bluewater. The gold award was received for its ‘Making Room for Nature’ biodiversity project which also created a vital wellbeing space for the local community at the Bluewater nature trail.

Biodiversity initatives

As part of the project the team created 188m2 of new flower beds and introduced pollinating plants and British native species to support insects. An additional 330m2 of wildflower planting was seeded in low quality areas to include the Cotoneaster Franchetti which absorbs 20% more air pollutants than other similar sized shrubs. The team reviewed all the planting and worked in collaboration with the onsite landscaping team and ecologist to draft this programme of improvements.

Sustainability and Innovation

The Silver award was for an ‘LED lighting programme’ that OCS introduced which was a phased lighting upgrade programme to convert all functional lights to LED and install automated controls and metering. This has delivered a 65% reduction in energy costs and associated carbon emissions. The Bronze award was for a ‘Building Sustainable Communities’ project which saw the team work with several local charities and community groups to raise environmental awareness, delivering 90 hours of community-based volunteering and over £400,000 of social value over the past year.

“To win gold, silver and bronze at the Green Apple Awards is a fantastic achievement and the team at Bluewater should all be very proud of their hard work. Working in partnership with our client with aligned values around the importance of collaboration, integrity and respect for communities and the environment has helped us to make a real difference. We will continue to support biodiversity on site and intend to use it for educational purposes for local schools as part of our community-based volunteering projects.”

Jacky So

ESG Director at OCS UK & Ireland

OCS achieved a score of excellence in the SIA audit.

OCS has recently undergone its annual Security Industry Authority (SIA) audit and achieved the maximum score in six out of the seven criteria and were awarded a score of 142 out of 145.

This is the 18th year that our business has committed to the Approved Contractor Scheme (ACS), a point worthy of note by the auditor from the National Security Inspectorate (NSI). The brand, reputation and continued delivery of the OCS gold standard was also noted.

“The continued investment in people through training, the use of a software programme to streamline HR, payroll and talent management processes and the continued promotion of mental health training all show clear progress.”

Officers at one of the largest contracts had a full understanding of the requirements of the customer and the expectation on them to achieve this. There was good understanding of the company values and copies of relevant documentation were available at the point of delivery.

A number of officers made the following comments: “The team work is amazing”, “We have good support from the supervisors and regular visits from management”, “ OCS look after their staff and we feel very well looked after”, “HALO has improved our communication with the customer”.

A new member of staff expressed that “I am in my element here with OCS”.

“The result owes much to the security teams, back of house support and the officers on site who all display the commitment to our security gold standard.  Thank you to our security teams across our portfolio and a huge well done to all those who participated in the audit. These teams are responsible for keeping our sites, our customers and the general public safe on a regular basis. Their commitment has ensured the company has achieved a very creditable score.”

Steve Gardner

Director of Security Risk and Intelligence

Valerie Dale, OCS Group Chief People Officer, attends back to the floor visit

Valerie Dale, OCS Group Chief People Officer, recently attended a back to the floor visit at one of our laundry facilities in Feltham.

Valerie’s day began with a tour of the site where she saw our fantastic colleagues and machinery in action. During the tour she learnt some impressive stats about the facilities, including that from January 2023 to August 2023, our dedicated team washed 74,675,556 kgs and processed 46,414,728 pieces of laundry, a true showcase of how exceptional our colleagues are at what they do!

Valerie’s first job of the day was ironing and her skills were put to the test as she aimed to meet the hourly ironing targets our colleagues achieve.

She then got stuck in with the laundry sorting where she worked with the team to make sure each item was put into the correct bag before it was prepared to be washed. After only 45 minutes, Valerie and the team managed to sort through an impressive 2.2 tonnes of laundry!

OCS proudly welcomes Thai Ambassador to its London office

On 14th December 2023, we had the pleasure of hosting the UK-ASEAN Business Council (UKABC) roundtable that involved Thai Ambassador, H.E. Mr. Thani Thongphakdi, visiting our London office.

Our colleagues had the opportunity to listen to Thani Thongphakdi share his thoughts on a number of topics, including upcoming Government events, our cultural economy and the pivotal role that ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) plays in our society.

“I was particularly impressed with the discussion highlighting the significance of social mobility for PCS Thailand and OCS Group, emphasising the need for fostering vocational skills development alongside academic achievement. These conversations resonated deeply with our commitments and values at OCS.”

Gavin Wainer

OCS Group Commercial Officer

What is UKABC?

UKABC is a leading organisation on all matters involving ASEAN. They provide awareness on the latest opportunities in the region and assist UK companies looking to expand their operations into markets across Southeast Asia.

OCS announces the acquisition of Profile Security Services to bolster its security services in the UK

OCS (“the Group”), a leading global facilities service provider, announces that it has acquired Profile Security Services (“the Company”), one of the UK’s largest independent security specialists. This strategic acquisition bolsters OCS’ existing security services offering to the public sector in the UK and adds expertise and strength in new industries including ports, utilities, and manufacturing. Furthermore, Profile Security Services’s leadership in innovation is aligned with OCS’ increasing focus on technology in security.

 

Founded in 1980, Profile Security Services has grown from a manned guarding business into a bespoke, technology-enabled security solutions provider operating across the UK. Today, the Company combines traditional physical resources with innovative technologies to deliver high standards of security and protect people, premises, and assets, for customers across the maritime, utilities, local authorities, and manufacturing industries. For Profile Security Services, this deal provides an exciting opportunity for further growth and development as part of OCS.

The two businesses have cultures and values which are fundamentally aligned, focusing on operational excellence to ensure the provision of the best possible service to their customers. For OCS, the addition of Profile Security Services represents another step towards realising its mission of becoming the world’s best facilities service provider.

“Profile Security Services has built a strong reputation in the market for its professionalism and the quality of service it provides to its customers across the UK. The Company’s leadership in innovation will support our existing focus on technological excellence, ultimately driving the best solutions for our customers who will also benefit from our broadened capabilities. Indeed, Profile Security Services’s impressive customer base plays into OCS’ existing strengths and offers new growth areas for the Group to pursue.

“We’re really pleased to be announcing this new investment – our second acquisition in the UK this year. I look forward to welcoming the Profile Security Services team to OCS.”

Daniel Dickson

UK & Ireland CEO of OCS

“Profile Security Services has operated independently as one of the UK’s foremost security specialists for over 40 years and we are proud to have built a strong reputation based on the high-quality service we deliver to our customers. This new chapter as part of OCS marks an exciting next step for our business. We have chosen this partnership with OCS because we believe that our cultures and objectives are fundamentally aligned, putting frontline colleagues who are central to our success at the heart of our strategies. I have no doubt that together we can offer our customers a truly market leading service.”

Martin McGowan-Scanlon

Managing Director of Profile Security Services

This acquisition is OCS’ second investment in the UK market since it merged with Atalian Servest’s UK, Ireland, and Asia operations earlier in 2023, following the acquisition of Accuro, the education and healthcare focussed facilities services provider, in October. Throughout 2023, OCS has also delivered impressive organic growth in the UK and Irish markets, investing in its people as well as technology, and winning several significant new customers including new contracts with the Government Property Agency, Irish Rail, and Royal Parks. The business remains dedicated to delivering on its ambitious growth objectives both through further M&A and organic growth.

Scottish and Southern Electricity Appoints OCS as Part of a £10 Million Investment Programme

As part of its commitment to delivering a safe, secure, and reliable electricity supply, Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) has awarded OCS a 5-year contract to support the upkeep of all its steel towers across its central southern England distribution area. This initiative forms part of SSEN’s £10 million investment to ensure that its 33kV and 132kV steel towers are in the best possible condition for its 3.1m customers.

A team of OCS specialist colleagues will be responsible for applying new coats of specialist anti-corrosion paint to the towers, which provides protection from the elements and prolongs the working lifespan of this essential infrastructure. All colleagues delivering these works are trained in tower climbing, rescue and Emergency First Aid and, importantly safety from the high voltage electricity system.

This work involves working at height in varying weather conditions, so wind direction and wind speed are monitored and used to manage overspray risks during the works. As well as remote and rural areas the towers can often be in challenging locations.

Technology will play a key role in streamlining on-site works with a bespoke OCS app providing real-time management information, giving teams on the ground live information on sites completed and notifications when each stage of works is ready for quality checks before being marked as fully completed. Real-time progress reports are used by the management team and are also available to the client.

“This is a key project for us over the next six months. The 33kV and 132kV steel towers are the backbone of our network, so it’s crucial that we do all we can to ensure that they’re in the best possible condition, continuing to power homes and businesses across central southern England all year round.”

Martin Bailey

SSEN’s Project Manager

“The decision by SSEN to select us as a framework partner to support them in maintaining their steel towers network, is testament to the proven skills and expertise of our teams and our market leading position. This is vital work that will ensure these communities can continue to be assured of a safe, secure and reliable supply of electricity and we are proud to be part of it.”

Barry Creswick

Director of Tower Painting at OCS

“This £10m programme of works a key part of our commitment to delivering a safe, secure, and reliable power supply for our customers. With electricity playing such an important role in all our daily lives, be that at home, at school or at work, it’s vital that we do all we can to ensure the overhead Line infrastructure is in the best condition possible.”

Chris Slingsby

SSEN’s Head of Works Delivery