At the 2017 Swale Business Awards, Kent Catering Service received the coveted accolade of Sheppey Business of the Year. Now the Sheerness-based business are once again entering the Swale Business Awards with their sights firmly set on a prize. The 20+ strong business has continued to go from strength-to-strength as they offer the supply, servicing, installation and cleaning of all commercial catering equipment including Gas, Electric and Refrigeration. KCS also offer maintenance agreements along with kitchen canopy and extraction services. Evelyn Irwin, Media Manager at Kent Catering Service stated: “All our staff and most of our clients are Kent-based which allows us to be pro-active with the way we respond to our clients. Whilst being able offer rapid-response times and emergency call outs (within 1-2 hours if required), we also aim for a first-time fix and try to make sure next day repair is aimed for”. By providing the complete package of service KCS have adapted to become a one-stop-shop solution at their clients’ door steps.
KCS has had an incredible journey over the two decades, starting as a one-man band running from home and progressing to be a nationally recognised, industry leader. Over the last 19 years, the business has grown its reputation across a diverse customer base in the public and private sector, which includes schools, universities, hospitals, industrial kitchens, restaurants and hotels. Evelyn continued, “Over the years we have carried out a variety of works for nearly 2,000 customers and one of our sites has over 1,500 appliances. Regardless of whether our clients have a service agreement, we have sustained 95% of all our clients – some for as long as 17 years. Building long-term relationships, supporting and contributing to each other’s successes is beneficial for great value and service at both ends.
“The company ethic is about providing customer satisfaction and a large part of our success is down to our highly driven and dedicated staff whom we invest and care for like a family business”.
The business has plans to add even more staff to their expanding team and to grow both their customer base and office space, all from their Swale location. “We continually strive to provide equal partnerships with all our customers by being a service-orientated company,” Evelyn said. “We aim to work with the speed and personal touch of a local business, whilst embodying the skills and experience of a far-reaching organisation to make sure that all our customers receive consistently high-quality service”.
Evelyn discussed the changes that had been taking place in the business since they picked up the Sheppey Business of the Year award in September. “Within the last few months KCS has been awarded a position on The ESPO Public Sector Procurement Framework 98. The benefits customers can receive from using companies with an ESPO position include discounted rates and a full assessment of companies’ financial stability, track record, experience and technical and professional ability”. Through gaining a position KCS have added more new customers and have carried out a larger amount of works for existing customers with implementing stricter working policies to maintain high levels of service.
Finally, Evelyn spoke about winning the award last year and her hopes for the 2018 awards: “Winning Sheppey Business of the Year at the last Swale Business Awards 2017 has been the perfect example of our impact in the Kent area and we are extremely grateful for the recognition we have received. We will soon be celebrating our 20th year in business and becoming a finalist and even winning an award would be invaluable. It would mean that our long-standing business plan in this industry is continuing to be successful and would be a grand reflection of how the loyalty of all our staff and clients furthers our success”.