Swiss Camplings Laundry featured image

Swiss Camplings – Strategic Case Study


A family-run UK commercial laundry business, Swiss Camplings is a supplier to hundreds of the country’s hospitality venues.


Swiss Camplings is a family-owned and managed business group, encompassing Swiss Laundry in Cambridge, and Camplings Linen in Great Yarmouth.

The multi-million pound company provides many of the East Anglia’s hotels, tourism venues, getaway destinations and universities with laundry and linen rental services.

Its roots date back to the early 1900s, and today the company has two of the most technically advanced and environmentally friendly commercial laundries in Europe.

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The case for support

Like so many entrepreneurial and ambitious businesses, Swiss Camplings had proven itself very capable of some of the more widely recognised demands of HR.

It had been able to successfully grow its workforce, retain good staff, and promote where appropriate.

And yet, with over 200 staff, the company still didn’t have its own dedicated HR department, nor a true grasp of what it might need to be looking at with regards to a more ‘strategic’ approach to performance, appraising and long-term operational hires.

Chairman Guy Turvill felt the time had arrived for the right HR partner to support the future trajectory of the group.

The approach

Swiss Camplings approached MAD-HR, detailing their requirement for a strategic contribution which would be honest, effective, challenging and supportive.

At the time, with no HR manager in position, core operational staff were often finding themselves busy trying to recruit staff via agencies, or spending time on issues which ought not have been their priority.

MAD-HR wasted no time in assessing where the business was at, as well as what it needed by way of strategy and by way of resource.

Carole stepped up further still, taking her place at board meetings, and was able to consistently provide challenging and insightful contributions.

Over time, MAD-HR has been able to embed new and important frameworks for HR strategy, has helped the company recruit its own HR manager, and has consistently assisted the directors in adjusting course or reshaping their vision as has been required in emerging circumstances.

Today, staff are better able to focus on their core operational roles, while still enabling the business to remain true to its ambitious focus.

The verdict

Guy is convinced that Carole and her team have made a vast and positive difference over the last three years.

He says:

“I think like many businesses, we were initially guilty of not really knowing exactly how HR would contribute to our business and how we could measure its full effectiveness.

“We recognised we weren’t deploying all resources in the right way. We wanted to do more around optimising recruitment and retention practices, appraising, managing performance, and being strategic in terms of future growth.

“Meeting Carole and the MAD-HR team has been invaluable, and without a doubt it has been a significant asset in light of Covid and the various implications on staffing which that has brought throughout the year.

“Carole is exceptionally capable and skilled. She grasps issues really quickly, follows things up, challenges us where it’s required, and always holds us to account.

“We’re very grateful to her and the team and see us having a long relationship with them as we continue on our path.”