The average overall rating for pubcos is 6.8 out of 10, up from 6.5 last year.
Responses ranged from 8.4 out of 10 for the best-performing pubco to 5.8 for the worst. Some 23% of respondents said their relationship had improved during the past 12 months, with 13% saying it had worsened.
The latest Tenant Track survey, run by Allegra Foodservice, sister brand to the Publican’s Morning Advertiser (PMA), was conducted in December 2014 among a nationally representative sample of 1,105 pub tenants from 11 pubcos.
Overall, Cornwall-based brewer and pubco St Austell was rated the best pub company with which to partner, scoring 8.4 overall, narrowly ahead of Thwaites. This is driven by a number of factors including high average pub sales, impressive ratings for the ordering process and strong performance in training and development.
In general, the survey showed progress in a number of areas, specifically pub-co compliance with codes of practice, satisfaction with business development managers and pub companies’ ordering processes.
Codes of practice
Significant gains have been made in pub companies’ compliance with codes of practice. Some 83% of tenants think their pub company complies with the code, up from 66% a year ago.
The drinks ordering process was the highest rated average across the study, scoring 8.1 out of 10. More than three quarters of orders are completed over the phone, with the rest online.
Business development managers (BDMs)
BDMs are generally well rated and respected, and there is a good alignment between how often tenants feel BDMs should visit and how often they actually visit and are most useful for their role in supplying tenants with PoS/equipment.
However, the survey did identify room for improvement in certain areas. Average ratings for food menus/choice and drink choice stood at a comparatively low 6.2 and 7.1, respectively.
Ratings for the use of technology for marketing and social media purposes are generally low — with social media, in particular, among the lowest in the study, averaging just 5.3 out of 10.
PMA editor Rob Willock said: “The Tenant Track survey of more than 1,100 pub tenants hardly paints a picture of an industry desperately in need of Government interference. The average approval rating for pubcos from their tenants, up strongly on last year, is much better than that of most of the politicians who have chosen to regulate the sector.
“Pubcos’ relationships with their tenants continue to get better, and compliance with codes of practice is markedly improved. There is, however, room for improvement, and even the best performing pubcos can learn from this survey what to focus on.”
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