New look uniforms mark a big change at the Trust

All porters, cleaners, and catering staff at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust will be wearing new look Trust-branded uniforms from today (1 April).

The new uniforms mark the transition of over 1,000 ‘hotel services’ staff (who work as porters, cleaners and caterers) to being directly employed by the Trust. Previously they were employed by Sodexo.

Our new employees will have NHS basic pay rates and sick leave and have access to the NHS pension scheme. This is the biggest single recruitment of staff since the Trust was formed.

Hotel services staff play a vital role in the smooth running of our hospitals and in ensuring high standards of cleanliness and care for our patients. It is hoped that this new way of providing hotel services will help to build upon all of this hard work.

The decision to directly employ hotel services staff follows a review last autumn which aimed to deliver significant improvements in the quality of the service and to make the Trust’s cleaners, porters and catering staff feel properly valued as part of the wider team.

Professor Tim Orchard, the Trust’s chief executive, said: “I believe this new model of employing hotel services staff will bring benefits to our organisation.

“Our porters, cleaners and catering staff make such a valuable contribution to how we care for patients and the experience they receive. Time and again, our patient feedback mentions the care and attention they receive from our hotel services staff.”

The Trust will run hotel services on a direct management basis for a year in order to establish the long-term viability of the model. An evaluation will then be taken to decide whether to continue to employ hotel services staff directly – and bring all staff up to full NHS (Agenda for Change) terms and conditions – or retender the contract with a significantly amended specification.


Agenda for Change is the pay and terms and conditions system for all NHS staff (apart from doctors and dentists). As well as pay, sick leave and pension, it covers annual leave, hours of the working week, part-time employees and employees on fixed-term contracts and a range of other terms and conditions.

Around half our hotel services staff had moved from the minimum wage to the London Living Wage on 1 November 2019 (£10.55 per hour; £10.75 by 1 April 2020). The remainder of our hotel services staff were on improved terms and conditions as they had been TUPE transferred from direct employment on NHS terms and conditions and/or from previous contract holders. These latest improvements to pay and terms and conditions will harmonise pay for all hotel services staff at NHS basic rates, with minimum pay of £11.28 per hour (including high cost area supplement) from 1 April 2020. All staff will also be eligible for paid sick leave from the first day of absence.