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‘As responsible businesses, we need to support the city where we operate’- major employer switches to local

‘As responsible businesses, we need to support the city where we operate’- major employer switches to local

McDonald’s staff will be rewarded with the city’s local gift card. Cards can be spent with over 170 businesses in Leicester.

A business leader and owner of four McDonald’s restaurants in Leicester employing 450 people is urging large businesses to support local to drive footfall and spend, after switching to the city’s local gift card for staff rewards and incentives.

Staff at the four Leicester McDonald’s stores will receive the Leicester Gift Card in a range of incentives throughout the year, such as employee of the month or quarter, rising star or long service awards.

Driven by BID Leicester, the Leicester Gift Card launched in the city in 2020. Over 170 shops, restaurants, attractions, hotels and salons accept the card in the city, including national brands like Next, New Look, McDonald’s, John Lewis and Boots, and independent businesses such as Curve Theatre, St Martins Lodge Hotel, East Street Lanes and Art’s Greek.

McDonald’s franchisee Angus Fraser said the more employers that choose to support local, the greater the impact for the city:

“Rewards and incentives are a huge and important part of the employee proposition. People want to be acknowledged and rewarded for doing a good job. In the past, we used Love2Shop vouchers for our staff as a thank you, however, as most of our team live and work in Leicester, it made sense for us to start using the Leicester Gift Card instead.

“The benefit of the Leicester Gift Card is that it feeds into our city centre. As a large city centre employer, it’s important for us to encourage our staff to spend locally as part of our corporate social responsibility efforts. Of our 450 staff, perhaps around 25% of those wouldn’t regularly shop in the city centre, but having the Leicester Gift Card as a thank you encourages them to do just that. Many of our staff are younger and have grown up with online shopping as the norm but the card gives them an incentive and a reason to shop in the city.

“Our use of the Leicester Gift Card is our small contribution to encouraging footfall and spend in the city centre but imagine if every organisation made that choice. The more employers choosing to support local through the Leicester Gift Card, the greater the impact for Leicester. The element of choice is also really important and there is more than enough choice on the Leicester Gift Card for my team.”

Angus, who is also chair of the BID Leicester board, which includes representatives from Leicester based businesses and organisations, adds that large businesses have a particular role to play in supporting the city:

“We know that if we give staff a £25 Leicester Gift Card, they might spend £30 or more in total and this initial spend and overspend is hugely beneficial for Leicester businesses of all types and sizes, and I’m equally happy to see the money spent with nationals or independents because a thriving city benefits us all. The range of independents in Leicester is one of our USPs as a city; they help to differentiate us from other places and encourage people to visit us over other towns or cities.

“As responsible businesses, we need to support the city where we operate and the Leicester Gift Card makes that possible. And I think it’s especially important for large businesses and brands to be leading the way by choosing local with their rewards and incentives. Switching from generic gift cards to the Leicester Gift Card is a no-brainer.”

James Dunham, operations executive at BID Leicester said: 

“It’s fantastic to see a large city based employer making the move to local. Every Leicester Gift Card has to be spent here in the city, locking spend into Leicester which fuels the circular economy. There are over 127,000 households in Leicester. If one person within each household was given a £10 Leicester Gift Card as a reward from their workplace or school, that would be an additional £1.2 million circulating in our economy, boosting city vibrancy and employment.”

Colin Munro, managing director of Miconex said: 

“In our 2023 research, 82% of employees said they would prefer to receive a gift card from work to other incentives, 90% said it would boost their motivation and 98% are keen to support local. The Leicester Gift Card is the reward that employees want, blending support for local businesses with ultimate local choice.”

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