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  • A Chat With Searcys Head of Health and Food Safety Helen Davies and our partner, CEO of Navitas Safety, Ben Gardner

    13 December 2021

    Ben Gardner, CEO of Navitas Safety

    Tell us about yourself and the Navitas as a company?

    (Ben) I’m Ben Gardner, CEO of Navitas Safety. We’ve been helping the hospitality industry for more than 33 years now and are now working hand-in-hand with 13,000+ sites globally. I’m the one behind the novel concept that Navitas Safety developed, which is digitising all food safety processes in one, centralised place.

    In a nutshell, Navitas Safety is a single destination to help food businesses meet all their food safety and health and safety requirements hassle-free. We help them work smarter to have a seamless food safety and health and safety journey, keeping their people, customers and reputation safe at all times.

    We give teams digital food safety kits to automate food safety tasks. We also have an online learning academy with gamified safety training. On top of that, we also offer food safety, health and safety and fire safety audit services with our passionate and experienced Environmental Health experts, who conduct 5,000+ audits per year, including COVID-secure audits.


    Helen Davies, Head of Health and Food Safety at Searcys

    What does your COVID-secure Searcys’ Audit entail? What has changed since the reopening of venues? Results?

    (Helen) All Searcys venues before reopening were Covid-secure audited and have successfully passed the stringent process.

    (Ben) Like everyone else, we had to adapt during Covid. Our goal is to keep everyone safe, so our team’s innovative flexibility capabilities truly played a key role in quickly developing COVID-secure audits and certifications.

    The objective is to provide confidence to staff and customers that the best safety practices are in place to keep them safe. Our Environmental Health experts adhere to the Government guidelines, which helps Searcys stay aligned and compliant with the latest regulations. More importantly, our work with Searcys was truly to work hand-in-hand for the safe reopening of venues and ensure that everyone – staff and customers – were feeling reassured.

    Our Covid-secure audits and certifications are both remote or onsite. They visit each site once a year in-person to run the audit and go through all things Food Safety, Health and Safety and even Fire Safety. They work closely with Searcys teams to ensure all is safe and any issues can be quickly fixed. Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, the Navitas Safety team has supported Searcys to ensure thorough disinfection processes and methods are being followed, safe social distance layouts are in place within each venue and staff understand Covid-secure hygiene processes. Ultimately, through our safety partnership, Searcys customers can enjoy their visit with complete confidence that they’re entering a safe and secure venue where the teams are dedicated to their safety and wellbeing.

    How can event organisers keep their delegates and guests safe?

    (Ben) We feel like safety is everyone’s mission. Our audit services provide in-depth detail if any issue is spotted so that staff can quickly be aware. We appreciate that not everyone is a safety expert and with ever changing legislation it can be hard to keep on top of what’s going on. That’s why choosing a safety partner like Navitas Safety gives businesses total peace of mind that they’re safety practices are in safe hands.

    It’s our absolute pleasure to support Searcys teams to ensure delegates and guests are safe at their venues. We provide the guidance, direction and assessment of their safety standards and ensure Searcy’s welcome delegates and guests safely at all times.

    What is the most unusual Searcys venue you have worked with?

    (Helen) Barbican site. Complex and iconic venue with 3 separate Searcys venues. Size of a cruise ship made of concrete in the heart of the city. Osteria, Bonfire and banqueting events and conference spaces all achieved certificates of excellence in their recent audits.

    (Ben) We love being part of the hospitality industry, we truly believe it’s the most exciting industry in the world. We love working with our diverse range of clients and how they delight their guests. We can also share that the fantastic team at the Barbican have received Navitas Safety certificate of excellence scores in their recent audits. So it’s not only a wonderful experience, it also has exceptional safety standards too!

    How do you help the company maintain stringent standards?

    (Ben) We like to work hand-in-hand with our customers. So our auditors work closely with Searcys to ensure that each audit report has clear feedback on everything safety. They help Searcys stay up-to-date with the latest regulations set by the Government and provide an edge with industry best practices to achieve 5* food and health & safety.

    What does role technology play in this? Any innovations you are helping Searcys to introduce?

    (Ben) Our Smart Probes are a key ally for temperature monitoring and creating safe workplaces. Searcys staff can upload all the temperatures, product, menu and supplier information and all temperature data is automatically logged into the platform with a camera for evidence if required. The Smart Probes are also like your own safety expert in your hand as they’ll guide staff to ensure they follow the correct safety steps to ensure food is managed safely for guests; meaning there’s no risk of human error. Blending expert support from our team of food safety experts with our technology solutions ensure that food safety processes are not only fast and efficient for Searcys venues but also food safety is flawless.

    Tell us about our people’s role in making our guests’ experience most enjoyable and safe?

    (Helen) Compliance to clear protocols and policies. Compliance to the 5 house Covid-secure rules. We learn before we use, we think before we lift, we wear our safety kit, we look out for each other, we clean as we go.


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