Horticulture Week Business Award - Arboriculture Contractor of the Year

Winner - Artemis Tree Services

Artemis Tree Services was appointed as an Arboriculture Association-approved contractor in 2013 with a turnover of £359,000 and nine staff. Since then, it has gone from working for small domestic clients to taking on very large construction and facilities management projects, including the regeneration of the former BBC Television Centre in west London — a development that has seen turnover grow to more than £1m with 28 staff, including four apprentices.

How has this been achieved? Firstly, by placing employee retention and development at the heart of the business, which boasts a 94% staff retention rate for 2018.

Artemis has coached 10 apprentices through the Capel Manor -College arborist apprenticeship scheme, eight of whom are still with the firm. Artemis believes investing in staff builds a happier workforce that will grow and progress within the company, ensuring that skills are retained rather than lost. In 2018, Artemis spent £31,300 and committed 283 days of training.

All staff have six-monthly appraisals and are encouraged to expand their knowledge and gain further qualifications. This year, two Artemis arborists are working towards their level six arb diploma certificate and are given two days a month to study. Artemis strives to ensure employee well-being with benefits such as paternity leave, role diversification, days off on birthdays, Pilates for back health, sabbaticals, flexible working and corporate team-building days.

Recent innovation has included a cloud-based customer management system that enables the team to manage jobs live on-site via an iPad. As well as cutting down on paperwork, the system makes it easy to keep -everyone up to date when the team is on the road.

The assessment process for the company’s Arboricultural Association "approved contractor" status includes compliance with health and safety requirements of arboricultural contracting, ensuring employee well-being. Artemis also carries ISO9001, ISO14001 and ISO45001 and has a company policy whereby 100% of green waste material is recycled as biofuel.

Repeat business is a key focus for Artemis, which utilises initiatives such as discount offers. Invoice emails include a link for clients to comment on workmanship and reviews are attached directly to the Artemis website. The business currently has a 99% rating.

Artemis hopes to maintain steady growth of around 10% per year while keeping staff happy and safe in their work.

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