Monday, 27 June 2016

ISO Accreditations

Over the last few months we have been preparing ourselves for the upcoming ISO assessment at our Swadlincote Head Office. We are pleased to announce that we have achieved five certifications from the internationally recognised ISO 9001:2015 to ISO 14001:2015, BS 18001:2007, ISO 27001:2013 and ISO 22301:2012 Management Standards with ISO Quality Services Limited.

This has been our first audit of 2016 however there will be an ongoing audit process which consists of two external visits per year. This will comprise of internal reviews, roughly every 6 months and an annual re-certification audit which will ensure that we comply with the requirements of the standard.

What does ISO 9001:2015 mean?
We have been accredited ISO 9001:2015 for Quality Management System which is a systematic and driven approach to managing the business. The idea behind this certification is designed to support the company to ensure that standards are met and we exceed the needs of our customers. A consistent level of quality and satisfaction should be delivered at all times.

How will this benefit the customer?
  • We will be following guidelines to ensure that we are providing steady, reliable and fit to purpose solutions.
  • Taking into consideration customer feedback and acting upon this, we will continue to improve our customer / supplier relationship.
  • When an issue occurs, we will guarantee that any concerns raised are identified and resolved promptly.

What does ISO 14001:2015 mean?
Being awarded ISO 14001:2015 in Environmental Management System allows us to control different aspects of the business which have a significant impact on the environment. Using this system has been proved to highlight the importance of environmental responsibilities, including both legal and regulatory accountabilities. We must be able to manage and control any risks that occur.

How will this benefit the customer?
  • If customers and suppliers have any interest in environmental performance, we can reassure them that they are working with a company which promotes a shared environmental ethos.
  • This will also show that we will continue to maintain our forward thinking and be environmentally aware of our social responsibility.

What does BS OHSAS 18001 mean?
This BS OHSAS 18001:2007 in Health and Safety Management System enables us to control and monitor risks that can arise during day to day activities within the company. This award will enable us to be pro-active rather than re-active and will help to protect the health and welfare of the workforce.

How will this benefit the customer?
  • Completing onsite risk and hazard assessments ensure customers that our products and services are delivered within legal requirements.
  • Raised awareness of health and safety codes of practice is promoted throughout the supply chain.

What does ISO 27001:2013?
To secure the company’s confidential information, we have been awarded the Information Security Management System which enables us to manage any potential security risks to files. By having this system in place, sensitive corporate information can be efficiently managed by identifying vulnerabilities and protecting them against potential threats.

How will this benefit the customer?
  • Working with a trustworthy provider helps maintain the company’s own integrity to the safeguarding of its data.
  • Installing confidence further down the supply chain will result in stronger customer / supplier relationships.

What does ISO 22301:2012 mean?
If any serious incident occurs, the ISO 22301:2012 will offer our company the ability to continue operating regardless of the seriousness of the incident. This is becoming increasingly important to businesses. By having a business continuity management system, it will lead to greater competitiveness and decrease the amount of ‘down time’ a business will have if the unexpected arises.

The ISO 22301 also covers the requirements for a robust business continuity management system, this will allow the company to minimise risks associated with disruptions and ensures control is maintained at all times.

How will this benefit the customer?
  • Increases our ability to deliver service in adverse conditions.
  • Reduces the amount of potential ‘down time’, - i.e. reducing risk in the supply chain.
  • Issues are identified and preventative actions are put in place to avoid disruptions.

If you would like to find out more information about our accreditation, please visit the official ISO website. As we continue to grow as a company, we will maintain high standards and aim to work towards further certifications. We are extremely proud to receive these awards and could not have done it without the team’s hard work and dedication. 

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Best Business Awards 2016

We have some exciting news to share with you all, back in May we entered some business awards and guess what? We won three awards which is a fantastic achievement as it was the first time we had entered with this association.

The entries for the Best Business Awards are judged by an independent panel of previous winners and other business experts. There is a specific criteria for each category which every submission must meet as it is scored against this with a particular emphasis on success and innovation.

What categories did we win?
  • Best Small to Medium Sized Business
  • Best Product / Service Range
  • Best Innovation

The whole of the First Fence Team were involved in making this win happen for us. With larger companies like DFS and British Gas having entered, we are extremely happy to be featured on the same awards page as them. This is a great example of how First Fence is developing as a company and continuing to grow within the public sector.

The judges feedback for Best Small to Medium Sized Business

With all four of our UK branches in full operation, to win this award has really boosted our confidence as First Fence is continuously being recognised. By highlighting our key components, this will help us to continue offering new ways of working.

“By moving with the times and investing in manufacturing, security fencing company First Fence has become a leader in its sector. It has responded well to increased demand for security fencing in a number of sectors, including railways, by introducing new ways of working, making sure it always has stock available and opening multiple sites across the UK to speed up delivery.”

What did the judges say about our Best Product/Service Range?

We have always tried to push how important it is for us to have a 24/7 Sales Line because we want our customers to receive an instant response no matter what the time is. By doing this, we have been able to build a trusting and long-lasting relationship with our clients due to our availability and customer service.

“Congratulations to First Fence for transforming its business into a fast, responsive and competitive enterprise. First Fence has stayed ahead in its industry by having in-house manufacturing and offering a 24/ sales service, which is unusual for the building sector. It is able to deliver on time and provide a same-day service. Well done to First Fence for providing a one-stop solution and for going the extra mile for its customers.”

Lastly, how was our new system seen by the judges for Best Innovation?

Our brand new system has made order processing easier to track. Once received, each order is reviewed to identify the related tasks, these are then assigned to the relevant department then ultimately end up in a virtual ‘deliverable’ or ‘collection’ tray to be picked and loaded for dispatch. Introducing this system has highlighted the importance of moving forward with technology as using a manual paper tray system was not as slick and efficient. 

“First Fence is a true pioneer in its industry because it has taken a risk and built its own innovative new order fulfilment system. The fact that at April 2016, 96.3% of orders were completed smoothly without any hitches proves the incredible efficiency of its new order fulfilment system. By having an auditable and reliable ordering system, it has supported First Fence’s rapid growth and greatly improved its relationships with customers.”

We would like to say a huge thank you to everyone who was involved in the Best Business Awards project. Everyone who works at First Fence has really represented the company and kept its standards at a high level. 

Wednesday, 8 June 2016

The newest member of the First Fence Team

We have some rather big news here at First Fence, we have recently had a well-known character join our Team. You may have previously heard of David Sneath as he has worked for several key players within the UK fencing industry, including steel Palisade manufacturers, Hadley Group. David has been appointed as our new Business Development Manager and we’re very pleased he is a part of the First Fence Team.

David’s primary focus will be to expand the company’s client base; this will help to establish more great working relationships with new clients and to strengthen existing ones. His knowledge and experience from previous roles will help him develop new opportunities for First Fence, this is something we are very excited to see as the company continues to grow. David will be working at our Midlands Head Office in Swadlincote for 50% of the time and another 50% on the road, this is where he will be able to create many more client relationships.

“I have known First Fence for the last four years and I am delighted to be joining this rapidly expanding business.”  - David Sneath, Business Development Manager

With David’s experience within Palisade Security Fencing and steel Railings, he will also be dealing with our entire product range. Already, we have seen David make some great changes and we look forward to seeing further improvements. Our current products range from permanent and temporary security fencingaccess solutions, traffic management systems and construction site supplies.

By joining the First Fence Team, David has taken an exciting step in his career progression. Previously he has worked at several fencing companies including, Fairmile Fencing for ten years, two years at CRH Fencing and Security Group, and most recently, four years at Hadley Group. With his expert knowledge and his can do attitude, First Fence are looking forward to becoming a ‘go to’ fencing supplier and enhancing our delivery services all over the UK. 

As we are a relatively young business, we have definitely made a large impact within the fencing industry, going from strength to strength as we continue to build long-lasting relationships with our clients. David will encourage us to develop our customer service, product ranges and our nationwide presence.