Karen Starkey
Image Source: Conservatory Outlet
Karen Starkey of Conservatory Outlet
Russ Cockburn

Member Article

Conservatory Outlet Group going for gold after Investors in People success

Conservatory Outlet Group is vowing to add to its 34 apprentices and empower its 312 staff members to ‘gold level’ standards, after securing a prestigious Investors in People (IiP) accolade for the first time.

The UK’s leading manufacturer of high-quality windows, doors, home extensions and conservatory products has been recognised with a ‘We Invest in People’ accreditation following months of hard work.

Rather than see it as the culmination of its efforts, it is instead being viewed as the beginning of a journey towards an even greater achievement, with the company vowing to secure Gold standard within the next three years.

Karen Starkey, Head of HR, explained: “We are thrilled to be honoured in this way, but the hard work now begins as we aim to hit nine performance indicators and become a gold level company. These include leading and inspiring people, empowering people, rewarding high performance and creating sustainable success.

“It is vitally important that we provide opportunities to our employees to grow and develop in their roles. We gain commitment from them as a result, as they see the value in our training and the opportunities it provides.

“We are proud to have enabled several staff members to further develop and grow. Progression is a key value to future-proofing our organisation, creating genuine careers and a sense of succession planning.”

Conservatory Outlet has utilised the Apprenticeship Levy to take on and develop 34 apprenticeships in career disciplines including Business Admin, Management Team Leading, Bricklaying, Customer Service, HR, Construction Building and Marketing.

The Investors in People official report states that ‘as well as having the right people with the skills and knowledge to support the achievement of the planned growth, you also have a focus on retaining and supporting existing staff to ensure that skilled people reach their potential and to make sure that the workforce is suitably balanced, fair, and diverse.’

Conservatory Group, which has its headquarters and 60,000 sq ft manufacturing operation in Wakefield, was praised for successfully growing the business, recruiting key people to support its growth, and introducing a number of working practices that have started to make a tangible difference on performance.

The management team were also highlighted for communicating regular company updates, which has helped people understand what is happening during the pandemic and the supply chain disruption that has followed.

Greg Kane, Chief Executive of Conservatory Outlet Group, added: “Training - and the continuous development of people - is one of the fundamental cornerstones of our business. We have examples of young apprentices working on their Admin Level 3 apprenticeship and, once completed, being supported to undertake their AAT qualification at college.

“A skilled, trained and knowledgeable workforce is key to ensuring we provide the best quality product and service to our customer. We also hold best practice events with our network of retailers, which accentuates the sharing of knowledge and expertise.”

Conservatory Outlet is already working on an action plan to secure the Investors in People’s Gold Standard in the next three years.

“A company is only as good as its people and we’re no different. It is great to earn this accreditation, but we view it as the starting point on a longer journey to becoming an even better employer, serving our staff with even better support and rewards,” concluded Greg.

For further information, please visit www. https://www.conservatoryoutlet.co.uk/ or follow @conservatoryuk

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Russ Cockburn .

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