Building a Workforce for the Future

Ocado's current and future success is dependent on our employees – people who innovate, find solutions and deliver world-class service. We are committed to sourcing and developing the highest quality talent throughout Ocado, while the continuous growth of the business has meant that hiring employees globally remains key.

Our fourth CFC in Erith has been steadily increasing its workforce as the demands of our UK retail business increase. The growth of Ocado Solutions has given us new focus as we deliver to our international business customers.

Our focus on growing and developing our people is a key message that Ocado uses to attract and retain individuals. We also understand that employee benefits make an important contribution to both employee engagement and the attractiveness of Ocado as a place to work. We are committed to continuing to provide a competitive compensation package inclusive of salary, pensions and other benefits. Ocado actively encourages employees to own Ocado shares, offering Free Shares at 1% of salary to all employees. We also offer both an employee Share Incentive Plan (SIP) and a Sharesave scheme, with participation at 7.4% and 16% respectively.

In addition to the share schemes, we provide access to a number of benefit choices for employees, including Neyber, a financial awareness initiative, alongside Bike Solutions schemes, car leasing and other health-care services, all of which are part of our wider Health and Wellbeing strategy.

Supporting the training and development of our workforce is crucial to delivering our mission: changing the way the world shops. The consistently high performance in our UK grocery business provides the shop window for our business-to-business proposition. A stable, well-trained workforce is vital to achieve this, which is why we invest in developing technical skills and also encourage personal development to support future career progression for both monthly and hourly paid employees.

In September 2018 we brought in a record 59 university graduates under our nine separate training schemes, covering General Management, Retail, HR, Finance, Engineering, Engineering Operations, Operations Management, Logistics and Technology, cementing our place as a significant employer and creator of new graduate jobs. Use of the Apprenticeship Levy has also increased with the scheme being used to fund many professional qualifications such as CIMA and specialist engineering courses as well as entry level employees.

  • This year we were delighted to launch our new online learning community for all Ocado employees. Called MiLearning, the site provides easy to navigate online content to help with day-to-day work as well as employees' personal and professional development.
  • This mobile first, easy to use platform encourages employees to explore their learning needs and find what support is available as well as being able to search for learning content to develop core, business and management skills all in the same place. It is available to employees 24/7.
  • The Learning & Development Team have not only focused on providing work related learning but supporting personal wellbeing too. It now offers additional learning support around dyslexia and autism as well as online resources for building personal resilience and developing English language skills.
  • The blended learning approach also supports the roll-out of mandatory training such as the recent GDPR compliance training that all monthly paid employees are required to complete – providing a detailed audit trail.

The safety and wellbeing of Ocado’s employees and associates is of the utmost importance. The Company’s objective is to ensure the safety of all employees inline with Ocado’s Health and Safety Policy and to ensure that its activities do not harm the public, customers or employees.

Ocado does not tolerate any form of corruption, fraud or criminality, of the giving or receiving of bribes for any purpose. Ocado’s Anti-Bribery and Money Laundering Policy details definitions of bribery and corruption, as well as how to report any cases of suspected wrongdoing. During the year, the Company introduced an independent and confidential whistleblowing service that allows our employees, suppliers and other third parties to raise concerns about possible improprieties.


We are committed to ensuring that the Ocado workforce has the diversity of talent and expertise that it needs and which will enable the business to continuing growing and innovating.

The metrics required to be reported under the gender pay gap legislation can be found on and the Government's online portal.

Our equal opportunities policy is dedicated to creating an environment for our employees that is free from discrimination, harassment and victimisation, reflecting our commitment to creating a diverse workforce and environment that supports all individuals irrespective of their gender, age, race, disability, sexual orientation, or religion. For more information about diversity on our Board, see Board Diversity.

Applications for employment by people with disability are always given full and fair consideration, bearing in mind the respective aptitudes and abilities of the applicant concerned and our ability to make reasonable adjustments to the role and the work environment. In the event of existing employees becoming disabled, all reasonable effort is made to ensure that appropriate training is given and their employment within the Group continues. Training, career development and promotion of a disabled person is, as far as possible, identical to that of an able-bodied person.

This year we were have extended our Disability Confident Leader status to cover the whole of our business, having successfully achieved this at our CFC in Dordon in 2017. We have appointed a number of CSTMs and a team manager this year who are profoundly deaf, ensuring their training and ongoing support meets their specific requirements.

Other areas of focus have received national recognition, including our work championing the care of expectant parents within Ocado.

All Employees

Senior Managers

All Employees by Gender




Our values

The pace and change of our business prompted a review of our People Values this year. The guiding principle was that any changes would have to be relevant to all employees irrespective of their work area and location. After lengthy consultation they have been reduced from four to three and the underpinning behaviours simplified using short, more memorable phrases.

Our Group People Values and the associated behaviours now act as an umbrella for the different ways of working that exist across our diverse network of teams and business areas.

We . . .

  • go the extra mile for our customers
  • do the right thing
  • celebrate our success

We . . .

  • fight for the common purpose
  • show trust and respect
  • care for each other

We . . .

  • never stop improving
  • thrive on change
  • learn from our mistakes

The Ocado Way behaviours

Crucial to how we embed the Group People Values is a manager behaviour programme, which is designed to encourage those key behaviours that we expect all of our employees, but particularly our People Managers, to demonstrate.

It is a developmental programme that supports managers in their career at Ocado.

These are the five key ways that we believe managers can demonstrate to our people that we care, that they are valued and are an important part of our business.

The aim of this programme is to develop and support our people managers so that they are the best manager they can be.

Ocado does not tolerate any form of corruption, fraud and criminality, or the giving of receiving of bribes for any purpose. Ocado's Anti-Bribery and Money Laundering Policy details definitions of bribery and corruption as well as how to report any cases of suspected wrongdoing.

The safety and wellbeing of Ocado's employees and associates is of the utmost importance. The Company's objective is to ensure the safety of all employees in line with Ocado's Health and Safety Policy and to ensure that its activities do not harm the public, customers or employees.

The Citizenship Code

The Ocado Citizenship Code ensures everyone at Ocado understands how we conduct our business, and explains the values and principles behind Ocado. The Citizenship Code was created by examining our business procedures and governance process, pulling all this information together, alongside our policies and procedures, into a single document. 

The Citizenship Code is the place where we cement and express the importance of our values and principles, as well as setting out our major policies which embed these values, in one easy to find place.

Engaging People

Giving our people a voice, communicating directly with them on Company achievements and celebrating our success in line with our refreshed Group People Values, are key objectives for our Engagement team. The Ocado Council remains an important method of engaging with our employees. Now extending to our European sites, this body of elected employee representatives helps us to identify areas where we can improve as an employer and encourage participation and consultation in the decisions we make.

Each business area council is chaired by a member of our Management Committee while an Executive Director attends each Group Council meeting to update and take questions from representatives about the business. Minutes from each meeting are published on Fuse, our mobile first communications platform to which all employees have access. We now have eight communications channels ranging from weekly briefs to our in-house magazine. In January we introduced our new mobile comms app which can be accessed by all our employees.

Case Study

Wellbeing at work

I had received a wealth of training opportunities and I really loved working for Ocado, but it was disappointing there was no process in place to support a smooth return to work after maternity or paternity leave. I'm pleased to say that's all changed now

Zuzana Starjakova Team manager

Hatfield warehouse Team Manager Zuzana Starjakova was awarded the Barclaycard Everywoman in Retail "Above and Beyond" Award for her work championing the care of expectant parents within Ocado.

Zuzana used her own experience to create new practices including: taking steps to educate managers about resources; starting an online social community within Ocado for expectant and new parents; creating shareable information packs; and also ensuring that on their return to work mothers felt comfortable and cared for by their managers (including a formal catch-up with the manager, mother and new baby and an eight week transition process back into work).

This year we have also made good progress with our Health and Wellbeing Strategy. This is delivered in a number of ways, with recent attention being given to raising awareness about mental health. Our People professionals have completed an externally recognised training qualification and an Aviva Train the Trainer course, which allows them to present the 'Ocado Managing Mental Health in Your Teams' course accredited by Aviva, to people managers. This and other training will continue to roll out in 2019 as an essential core course for managers' personal development, along with an awareness campaign aimed at encouraging employees to ask for support when they need it.

Strategic Report Approval

The Company's Strategic Report is set out here.

The Strategic Report is approved by the Board and signed on its behalf by

Neill Abrams

Ocado Group plc
Registered in England and Wales
Number 07098618
5 February 2019