Deep Blue

Deep Blue has been serving up fish and chips from outlets around the UK for more than a decade and is understandably proud of its safety record in what is a challenging work environment.
Since joining Mentor in 2009, for support in health & safety and employment law & HR, the group has worked to remain compliant in an ever-changing legislative landscape.

The Best Result

When the business faced a difficult £100,000 civil claim for damages three years ago, it was Mentor Health & Safety Consultant Darren Heather's expert support that gave Deep Blue the confidence to challenge the advice of its insurer, and emerge with its reputation intact.

“If we hadn't taken this approach, there would have been implications not only for Deep Blue, but for the industry as a whole,” Darren explains.

The 2012 case centred around an employee's claim that their health had been affected by a food preservative used industry-wide.

As Lorraine Turner, Deep Blue's Head of HR, explains: “Mentor has supported us with everyday things like improving our management team's awareness of health & safety and HR issues. However, the help we received to manage the legal - and financial and emotional - impact of a long-running civil claim has been invaluable. 

“Darren was fully supportive of us in our belief that we were not at fault and should fight the claim: if the claim had been successful, the effects would have been felt much further than with Deep Blue. This product is used across the industry and could have changed the way our product is prepared.

“He helped us to implement our own independent research to counter the claims and it was the depth of this work that meant that in January 2015 the case was dropped.”

There were unexpected consequences of fighting the claim, Lorraine adds. “We discovered that a £100,000 reserve was placed on our policy by our business insurer, which in turn increased the policy premiums for the three years it took to resolve the issue.”

Everyday Help

Mentor is not only there for the big challenges, but for the everyday ones. “The 24/7 Advice Line is great for simpler queries, and we get regular fire risk assessments,” Lorraine explains.

“We've also employed Mentor consultants as impartial experts to manage site visits from health & safety inspectors.”
There is also a range of training options available through MentorLearn, often delivered in-house, on topics such as fire safety and manual handling.

“We have a young workforce, and this training allows our managers to educate - and protect - our people,” Lorraine says.

Deep Blue also relies on Mentor for employment law & HR support, from keeping employment documentation up to date to handling disputes with staff - including the dismissal of an underperforming employee and a dispute with a senior manager.

“Mentor consultants are independent and have the experience and expertise to achieve the best outcome for our business and to protect our reputation,” Lorraine concludes.

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