R3, an enterprise software firm, are pioneers in digital industry transformation. Their blockchain platform is digitalizing the processes and systems firms rely on to connect and transact with each other.
Their mission is to contribute to society with innovative ideas and technology and to ensure their impact extends beyond business.
Steph Paine, the Operations Specialist and Corporate Social Responsibility Chair at R3, talks about how Express Vending was able to help facilitate one of her new initiatives and give back to the community during the Coronavirus pandemic.
It feels like a lifetime ago when Boris Johnson began his daily briefings and instructed everyone to work from home where possible.
Like many other businesses, R3 needed to act quickly and were left with perishable food and drink on-site and none of their 200 staff to consume it.
It was the bright idea of receptionist Rebecca to begin sending products to those in need. Steph contacted her Everyday Essentials Account Manager, Tina Frost for advice.
Before the changes in workplace hours, R3 would offer a selection of breakfast items, snacks, and drinks to their staff. Tina recommended rediverting their regular deliveries to local food banks instead.
Steph continued to place her weekly orders whilst the office was closed and the staff at Express Vending worked behind the scenes to redirect orders to those in need. Some of the products R3 usually ordered weren’t suitable for food banks, so Tina was able to provide a list of recommended alternative products.
"I don't think we realised at the beginning of lockdown how important food banks would be to people."
The first food bank to receive a delivery was one of Express Vending’s charity partners DEN’s, based in Hemel Hempstead.
After a few weeks, deliveries were also sent to Brixton Soup Kitchen and Shoreditch Food Trust.
One of Express Vending’s fruit suppliers, Fruitful Office, had a scheme in place where customers could continue their fruit standing orders, but they would all be rediverted to NHS hospitals and care homes.
R3 were thrilled to take part and have enjoyed seeing all of the photos that have been sent by Fruitful Office.
“We thought about our staff and putting them in the best position while working from home, but we also wanted to consider our wider community.”
The Everyday Essentials department within Express Vending offers a one-stop-shop for all our customers’ refreshment needs in the office.
With the introduction of national and local lockdowns, our Everyday Essentials Account Managers have come up with many innovative ways to help companies attract, engage, and retain their employees whilst continuing to work from home.
For offices remaining open, Express Vending continued to supply hot and cold drinks, milk, fruit, snacks, and more. Offices with remote staff have benefitted from letterbox snack boxes, wellbeing programmes, and more!
Express Vending have also introduced new charitable services this year, such as buying meals for the NHS frontline staff and initiatives championed by R3. The Account Managers work very closely with their customers to find the right solution for them and are always keen to hear about new charitable opportunities!
Summer is usually the quietest time of the year for food bank donations, so all three charities were thrilled to receive such generous offerings from R3!
They have been incredibly grateful, and the food has gone to those most in need during these challenging months. DENS even reported having a surplus of products which is another fantastic outcome.
The news was communicated to staff via a weekly newsletter, their internal portal and during a Town Hall presentation to the UK, Ireland, and New York workforce.
The fruit from their Dublin office has also been donated and a similar scheme has been put in place in New York.
All communications have included pictures of the deliveries being packed and delivered to the charities in Express Vending vans. “It’s a great way for everyone to see the amount being donated and the impact they’ve had.”
The initiative has been very warmly received, and the staff have loved feeling part of something so positive in a challenging year!
“It’s just the most natural and easy thing to do and its nice when you know that your supplier is thinking the same way that you do.”
Express Vending would like to give thanks to R3 for launching such an inspiring initiative and choosing us to facilitate it.
We look forward to continuing this scheme with R3 and other customers. Get in touch with your Account Manager for more information on how to take part!