(From left to right) Members of Hft’s executive team - Hilary Crowhurst, Jacqui Roynon, Robert Longley-Cook and Steve Barnard

(From left to right) Members of Hft’s executive team – Hilary Crowhurst, Jacqui Roynon, Robert Longley-Cook and Steve Barnard

Hft, a national charity supporting people with learning disabilities, has been awarded the Investors in People Gold Standard in recognition of its outstanding people management and commitment to developing staff.  The organisation is among just seven per cent of organisations across the UK to hold the highly sought after gold status. 

The Gold Standard is the highest accreditation organisations can achieve. Since launching in 1990, it has been awarded to just 1,047 organisations across the UK, of which 24 are charities.

Investors in People is the UK’s leading accreditation for business improvement through people management, and provides a wealth of resources for businesses to innovate, improve and grow, with a focus on good people making great business.

To achieve Gold status the charity needed to meet 39 core requirements of people management in areas such as business strategy, recognition and reward and learning development approach.

In the Investors in People (IiP) summary report commented: “As IiP Assessors, it is a privilege to gain an insight into an organisation like Hft.  We cannot fail to be impressed by the dedication and professionalism to be found in all aspects of Hft operations.  The positive outcomes you are achieving for the people being supported are terrific.”

The report also highlighted the positive impact of intranet to share information and the charity’s Fusion Model which provides a framework to support and empower staff to consistently deliver high quality person-centred services.

Hft Chief Executive, Robert Longley-Cook said; “I’m very proud of Hft for achieving IiP Gold accreditation.  This is a fantastic acknowledgement of the commitment and professionalism of all our staff.  I was also delighted that the assessors highlighted the impact of the Fusion Model in driving our ‘One Hft’ strategy to deliver consistently high quality services for people with learning disabilities across the organisation.”

Hft was established in 1962 by a group of pioneering families who set up the first service in Gloucestershire and has since grown to provide support for adults with learning disabilities across the UK.  In 2013 Hft merged with Self Unlimited and currently employs more than 3,300 staff across the country.

Hft has been recognised as an Investor in People since 2004 and achieved Bronze accreditation in 2010.


Paul Devoy, Head of Investors in People, said: “We’d like to congratulate Hft on their Gold standard. Such a high level of accreditation is the sign of great people management practice, and demonstrates a commitment to staff development and shows an organisation committed to being the very best it can be. Hft should be extremely proud of their achievement.”