Ei Publican Partnerships, part of the UK’s largest pub company Ei Group, has revamped its online ‘Applicant Channel’ for prospective publicans, becoming the first in the industry to digitalise the entire application process, from start to end.
The Applicant Channel is a digital search and application platform for those seeking a leased or tenanted pub business. While historically, a large part of the pub lettings process required completing paperwork, Ei’s new and improved system will enhance the user journey, making the onboarding process more streamlined and efficient than ever before.
The upgraded channel clearly demonstrates Ei Group’s ambition to be a sector leader when it comes to utilising the power of technology, as both aspiring and existing publicans are turning to digital tools and devices to start their new pub venture. More than two thirds (68%) of prospective publican enquiries now originate from digital channels, such as email, social media and through the website, compared to just 22% of enquiries in 2016.
As part of the enhanced channel, key improvements include a more guided, tailored experience for applicants whereby they will receive personal messages, reminders for when information needs to be submitted, and support via the telephone or social media channels. One of the latest features enables applicants to ‘favourite’ up to five pubs, which are added to their basket, making it easier to compare their options all in one place.
In addition, Ei Publican Partnerships has partnered with FLOW Hospitality Training to offer both new and existing publicans a range of training modules entitled ‘eilearning’. These resources will help applicants prepare for their new journey, equipping them with valuable knowledge on running a successful pub business via a suite of e-learning modules, videos, and Pub Principle Guides, which can all be accessed via PC, laptop or mobile device.
Ei Group, Group Recruitment Manager, Matthew Ralphs said, “We are constantly striving to find new and innovative ways to attract and recruit new publicans, while simultaneously providing the best, user-friendly tools to create a positive experience. It’s exciting to go paperless at a time where technology can be used for just about anything – the only ‘offline’ part is to sign the final official deal.
“With the newly-developed platform, we want to continue to attract applicants by ensuring the process is as smooth and frictionless as possible and give them the support they need at their fingertips.”
Later this year, Ei Publican Partnerships plans to make further improvements to the Applicant Channel, including a new look and feel, which was suggested by its trusted Publican Council, a group of top performing publicans from across its estate, set up as an advisory board for Ei Group.
Applicants could earn themselves £1k by recommending a fellow publican.