Scottish Firm Behind Workplace Cafes Puts The Good Into Good Coffee

The Good Coffee Company teams up with Social Bite and Dear Green to make offices more than just a place to work

Firm sees surge in interest as companies upgrade offices to encourage teams back to the workplace

A SCOTTISH company which creates and runs high-quality coffee houses in the offices of some of the UK’s best-known businesses has joined forces with charity Social Bite to help end homelessness.

The Good Coffee Company installs and manages cafes in workplace receptions and breakout areas to help bring teams together and create more collaborative environments.

The Glasgow-based firm has seen a surge in interest as employers upgrade office environments to encourage staff back into the workplace following more than a year working from home during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Good Coffee Company has pledged to only work with partners and suppliers that share its values and ethics, and as part of its partnership with Social Bite, the firm – which turned over £300k in 2019 and expects to top £2 million within three years – will donate a significant percentage of profits to the charity.

The cafes sell ‘grab and go’ style snacks and food produced at Social Bite’s kitchen in Livingston, which provides employment opportunities to the homeless. They also serve coffee by Dear Green, a certified B Corp based in Glasgow’s East End.

Josh Littlejohn, founder of Social Bite, said: “We are delighted to be partnering with The Good Coffee Company in this new and exciting venture. It’s a great opportunity for us to provide our food to even more locations across Scotland and expand our wider work to help contribute to the mission of ending homelessness. We hope many more organisations choose to get involved and consider having the Good Coffee Company in their workplaces.””

According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), more than half of the UK’s employees travelled to work in March for the first time since official figures began being recorded last June, suggesting employees are beginning to return to workplaces.

However, studies including the CIPD’s Impact of Covid-19 on Working Lives suggest significant proportions of the UK’s workforce remain reluctant to return to the office, with health, safety and wellbeing at the forefront of their concerns.

It’s one of the main reasons businesses are turning to The Good Coffee Company to help create workplaces more suited to mental and physical wellbeing.

The Good Coffee Company founder Lawrence Morison previously co-founded Azure, a hospitality provider in the sport and leisure market acquired in 2004 by Elior Group after growing to £15m turnover working for clients including Hamilton Racecourse, Rangers Football Club, Manchester United and Hampden Park Stadium.

During that time, Lawrence recognised the appetite for workplaces to improve their catering options, and has since installed five in-house cafes, with two more in the pipeline.

Current clients and customers include Savills, Mitie, Ambassador Group, Cuthbert White, Virgin Money, Utilita, News International, Specsavers and the NHS.

The company takes care of every part of the journey, including design, space planning, consultancy, furniture and technology. 

Whether it’s a new cafe designed and installed by the company, or an existing on-site facility in need of a makeover, The Good Coffee Company manages cafes including the employment of expertly trained baristas.      

Lawrence’s time in the Royal Navy and in Senior HR roles for Diageo and Sodexo were the building blocks for a career empowering teams to perform better.

He said: “There’s been much said about the end of the office, but I don’t think that’s the case whatsoever. People don’t want to work all day, every day from home. It’s so important to be around other human beings. Both for mental health, problem solving and sharing.

“Using our decades of experience in the industry, we help businesses attract and retain staff by providing a collaborative workplace that rises to the challenges of today.

“In the market, there’s a real appetite from businesses to make their workplaces fit the appetite of today’s post-covid workforce.

“Our aim is to provide a space for people to interact, create and share joy. In doing so, our solution helps to improve productivity, financial return and employee satisfaction.”

He added: “We are a firm with a social conscience, and our partnership with Social Bite is very much at the heart of that. We believe in doing good business, but we also believe business can and should do good. From our customers and staff to the way people are treated right down our supply chain, we believe in businesses doing their utmost to ensure everybody is looked after and treated fairly.”

As well as fresh and delicious sandwiches, rolls, toasties and paninis, all made by hand with fresh local ingredients at Social Bite’s central kitchen, the company also offers sweet treats and baking from Cake, Mortons and Patisserie Boulangerie.