AWARD WON: Landscape Contractor of the Year
Location: Billericay, Essex
National training manager and technical support manager: Neil Huck
Tell me about your key goals/priorities as a business for 2019.
We'll target business growth. Everything is in the air because of Brexit and though we shouldn't be be directly affected by the decision, it could have indirect implications on supplies, materials and plants. We will be talking to English suppliers, but some things cannot be sourced other than by crossing the North Sea or the Channel.
What do you feel will be the biggest challenge for you as a business (or for your sector) in 2019 – and why?
The rapidly ageing workforce. We recently had a British Association of Landscape Industries (BALI) meeting and we all agreed the situation is disturbing: we have a lot of talented people who are retiring and cannot replace them. That's why I'm working hard on Trailblazer apprenticeships to try and fill these skills gaps. Newcomers need the right skills and the right amount of training.
What do you regard as the biggest opportunity for you as a business (or for your sector) in 2019 – and why?
Business growth – winning new clients thanks to the good work and high standards we've achieved with existing ones. There are lot of opportunities for companies that are prepared to really listen and understand what the client wants, then offer a transparent service so the client sees they are getting value for money. Every client this asking that question.
What was the best thing about winning a Horticulture Week Business Award for you as a business?
The best thing is a unique kind of kudos. We've won landscape and grounds maintenance awards before, but this one is a business award, which is fantastic at a time of economic uncertainty. It proves our business is not only thriving but being run to a very high standard across all areas including ethics, staff and the environment.
***THE 2019 HORTICULTURE WEEK BUSINESS AWARDS IS OPEN FOR ENTRIES!***
For full details of categories and how to enter, please go to: www.hwbusinessawards.com