How best to measure Value for Money

We know that an organisation’s investment in the Continuous Awards Programme is not insignificant. But we also absolutely know that it delivers exceptional value for money, and we have abundant evidence to prove it. You’ll find plenty of examples on this website.

So how do you measure value for money in Housekeeping and Catering provision? Here are some of my professional observations from the experience gained in leading the CAP Assessment Team for almost a decade.


Value in Housekeeping

Over the years, Housekeeping has shown us some great examples of false economies and poor value for money. The typical scenario is where the issue is one of indifferent cleaning standards. So often, this is addressed by simply employing more staff. However, that’s rarely the optimum solution. More often than not, we see that the issue is more about productivity. That productivity can invariably be improved by having the right people in the right place at the right time. And with the right equipment.

Within the CAP Programme, we deploy our proven CAP HK Tool (HK for Housekeeping) to quantify this and put the corrective steps in place. It’s rarely a one-size-fits-all solution, so the HK Tool takes into account circumstances specific to the organisation. The in-depth analysis the tool verifies the cleaning time at each task versus the frequency of cleaning. Importantly, it applies externally verified benchmark timings. To date, the average savings in staff costs across the CAP Programme sits at an impressive 31%! Who wouldn’t want to share that value?


Value in Catering

In catering, experience shows that, again, the issue is indifference. In this case, it’s typically indifferent food quality. In the scheme of things, even excellence in the food service, imaginative menus or cheerful catering staff cannot truly compensate for indifferent food. We frequently note that the range of the food on offer, and sometimes the actual quality of the dishes, is attributed to the food procurement budget. That’s hardly ever the case. Time and again, we see that the budget is not the issue. Instead, the most common cause is how this budget is spent and monitored.

By developing the Operational Tools within the CAP Programme, we long ago established a trusted method to measure each step of the food production process against valid benchmarks – from food waste to portion sizes, from raw food productivity to the actual service counts, and from procurement practices to financial accountability at the final activity level. Within the CAP Programme for education establishments, where excellence in food quality is the key measure, the average pupil lunch allowance sits below 90p. Again, that has to be great value for quality food.


Measuring value overall

To determine value for money in housekeeping and catering, simple quantifiable measurement and monitoring are all that’s required. It need not be administratively heavy. And it isn’t time-consuming. The key is to focus on just a few critical indicators.


Contact us if you’d like to know more. Don’t hesitate to call or email us if you have any questions about your housekeeping and catering services.