The UK casino industry learns from EPIC’s lived experience
The majority of the UK’s land-based casino industry was represented at ‘Beyond Compliance and Responsibility’ – EPIC Risk Management’s showcase event at The Hippodrome Casino, London, to explain how customers and venues alike can be protected in a safe and sustainable casino industry.
The event brought together CEOs, heads of compliance and other senior staff from most of the country’s best-known casino brands, as EPIC presented the results of a gambling harm minimisation pilot training programme for the sector and introduced the new product that can now be delivered to land-based casinos to provide both knowledge and confidence for public-facing staff to recognise gambling-related harm among customers.
The Hippodrome Casino was the host venue for both the pilot programme and the showcase, with the latter fusing lived experience presentations from those who had experienced gambling-related harm in a casino setting, alongside a panel discussion on the findings of the pilot from both a venue and a customer’s perspective.
“What I was really pleased about was the level of engagement within the room,” explained Joanna Whitehall, sustainability manager at EPIC Risk Management.
“Everybody was asking questions, and then after the presentations, everybody was talking about all the topics that we had spoken about.
“It got a lot of really good conversations going about how to have a really safe and sustainable business in the land-based casino sector.”
With 20 years of experience working in that sector before joining EPIC, Whitehall is well placed to recognise the challenge that casino staff face when talking to customers about their relationship with gambling, underlining the importance of providing a bespoke training programme that can equip them with the knowledge and conversation topics to instigate a discussion which might otherwise prove difficult to approach. She added:
“A lot of people working in casinos are very under-confident about their ability to have conversations around safer gambling.
“It’s really important to understand that it’s not just about the money; it’s about how people are actually feeling about their gambling. Are they still enjoying it, and what it is that they enjoy, because a lot of the time, what we hear is that level of enjoyment has been lost, and often it’s not until you have that conversation with the customer that they’re not enjoying it that you can unpick that a bit further.”
Having supported the project throughout its development, The Hippodrome Casino’s director of business services, Sam Douglas, was also pleased with the reaction from the showpiece event, explaining:
“I've thoroughly enjoyed it, and it has been great to see so many people from the industry down here.
“There have been some great speakers, some details about how the research project has gone and a chance to raise awareness of the benefits of the lived experience approach to training within the industry.
“I think it's given a fresh indication of what's going on to many different people and it has been a chance to explain all the benefits of the pilot session that we've had here.”
For those who were unable to attend the showcase but believe that their land-based casino could benefit from EPIC’s training programme, contact firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange an informal discussion regarding the potential product on offer to safeguard your customers.