A multi-campus dining experience for business school executives

Published on : 7/18/19
  • Sodexo’s partnership with INSEAD

    This case study was originally published on the global Sodexo website.

    A diverse learning environment

    INSEAD is a high-performing graduate business school with campuses in Singapore, Abu Dhabi and Fontainebleau, France. One of the most culturally diverse educational institutions in the world, it has around 150 faculty members from 34 countries, who teach more than 1,400 students from over 100 countries.

    Unlike most tertiary institutions, the INSEAD cohort consists of senior business leaders, top-performing executives and high-achieving graduates and postgraduates. They study its MBA, Executive MBA, specialised Master’s degrees and PhD programmes. 

    An independent, private and not-for-profit organisation, INSEAD is a place for dialogue and exchange, acting globally as well as locally. Students can study at any of its three campuses with identical core courses, fully transferrable credits and a similar campus experience. Around 77% of INSEAD’s students spend their time across the three different locations.

    For the INSEAD Asia Campus, in 2018, as competition for international students increased, INSEAD decided to offer more inter-campus flexibility to support student mobility. As well as ensuring consistency in its signature look and feel across the three campuses, INSEAD set about changing its physical infrastructure to include large co-working spaces with meal programmes, IT assistance and gym access.
    Minh Huy Lai, Managing Director, MBA Program at INSEAD, commented at the time: “Students are becoming more demanding; they’re behaving more like customers, questioning old processes and demanding new services.”

    To support these objectives and maintain its competitive standing, INSEAD wanted to work with a food partner who could offer a high-quality catering service suited to its unique student population. In early 2018 INSEAD held a competitive bid among major market players to find a new food services partner. 

    Meeting student expectations

    Following a competitive pitch against both local and overseas vendors, Sodexo was selected as the food services partner for INSEAD. Sodexo showed that it was able to offer quality food options and conducive networking spaces in a dynamic, fast-paced environment. And, importantly, it could replicate this across all three campuses to provide a consistent executive dining experience. 

    Its unique proposition included:

    • Grind & Brew – a modern coffee shop where students can sip their morning brew while planning their day. A choice of seating zones allow for networking, individual think time and collaboration. After hours, Grind & Brew transforms into a wind-down destination with live entertainment. While the Insiders Den offers a place to relax and network, with a premium selection of cocktails and curated (?) food on the menu.
    • The Hub – a central dining hall that serves freshly cooked dishes at vibrant food stations. A mobile app will soon allow students to pre-order their food and ’grab and go’ 
    • The Grove – for a more exclusive experience, diners can conduct business lunches here. This executive dining restaurant boasts high-quality dishes and wines A new software allows all departments to place online orders for events, functions or coffee breaks, helping ensure consistency in the delivery for consumers.

    Dining that fits with campus life

    Since the contract began in August 2018, Sodexo has transformed the way students and staff eat and drink on campus. A wide variety of premium offerings and well-designed spaces have been provided thanks to Sodexo’s top-notch chefs and experienced staff.

    The food and beverage outlets on campus and near student residences offer freshly prepared food, handcrafted beverages, sharing plates, grab and go, and more. As students flit from lessons to project meetings and work commitments, they can stop at a dining outlet that suits their mood, or their circumstances at that particular moment. 

    Sodexo’s 50-year track record of providing catering services in educational settings worldwide, coupled with its commitment to understanding the needs of different student cohorts, has created a dining experience that cares students health and wellbeing, while fits naturally into the dynamic learning journey at INSEAD.