At Heart with Smart Group we believe in whole person development providing opportunities for our people to develop not just their technical skills but their character. We partner with a number of expert organisations, including Heartstyles.

We also invest in work-based education as the cornerstone to professionalising the hospitality industry and more broadly, enabling social mobility. We offer qualifications from Level 2 – Entry Level Apprenticeships through to MBAs.


In-house Education.

We have been building our expertise in the field of work-based education over many years, it takes real time and leadership commitment to manage professional programmes in-house and we are now fully accountable for the quality of face-to-face and online learning that we deliver. Like a school, we are routinely audited by Ofsted and we are currently graded ‘Good’ and on a pathway towards ‘Outstanding’.

CMI Confidence

Higher Level Education.

In 2016 we were very proud to partner with Manchester Metropolitan University and the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) to develop the UK’s first Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeship in Hospitality, we have since extended our University network to provide UK wide access to a range of higher level qualifications up to the level of MBA. Helping to build confident leaders with CMI.

Our Chief People and Marketing Officer, Kath Austin, is a board director for CMI Wales. You can see her here talking about the benefits of apprenticeships for social mobility.


Passionate Learners.

We see first-hand our students flourishing in the work-based learning environment with about 75% of our apprentices progressing on to the next role within the organisation and/or the next level qualification. Every year we have an increasing number of Restaurant learner-leaders who are passionate about studying whilst nurturing the next generation and as a result, we have a stable operation that benefits from market leading retention and operational productivity.

Our approach to education is not just a ‘corporate virtue signal’, it takes real time, commitment and expertise to lead work-based education programmes however it is worth it, we have earned a true ‘Heart with Smart’ culture steeped in continuous improvement and that sets us apart as the UK’s leading Franchise operator.