The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from Hopefield Fab is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.
Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett
Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles
27HOPEFIELD FAB |
BEST PRACTICE REPRESENTATIVE 2019
Managing Director Gary McClung
The Ivy Restaurant, Tower Bridge – the contract
included an overbar gantry, moulded skirting, footrail
and tubular feature bar front all in antique brass
Based in Bolton, Lancashire, Hopefield Fabrications Ltd is
the industry leader in tailor-made metal bar tops, over-bar
glass racks, under-counter units and cocktail stations in the
UK. Hopefield have worked with a range of high-profile clients
in the hospitality and leisure sector, including The Ivy, Rick Stein,
JD Sport, JD Wetherspoon and Nando’s. Hopefield has a skilled,
hands-on management team that has more than 80 years’
combined experience in the metalwork industry. Managing
Director Gary McClung elaborates.
The three Rs – re-evaluation, restructure and resilience – are the central
contributing factors to the continuous growth and ongoing success of Hopefield
Fab Ltd. We have established a culture of organisation that is reinforced through
our typical family-owned and family-run values. We have an unrelenting dedication
to employee safety, job satisfaction and high standards. Creativity is encouraged
and flourishing talent welcomed.
We were awarded a corporate member spot on The Guild of Master Craftsmen
trade association in March 2018. The Guild of Master Craftsmen is the UK’s
most established trade association, representing skilled and rated tradesman,
craftspeople, artisans and other professionals who strive for excellence in
workmanship. In addition to obtaining this standard, we have also been shortlisted
in two categories at the 2018 Bolton Business Awards: “Business of the Year” and
“Manufacturer of the Year”.
»Founded in 2009
»Based in Bolton, Lancashire
»Number of staff: 18
»Hopefield Fab Ltd are industry
leaders in producing one-
of-a-kind metal bar tops,
over-bar glass racks, under-
counter units and decorative
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
28 | HOPEFIELD FAB
with every job,
Through maintaining an order of
importance with every job, we have
managed to create a structured service,
allowing the company to acquire and
complete an ever-increasing number
of jobs. But it wasn’t always this way.
An evaluation of the efficiency of
processes and procedures four years
ago by our management team was
swiftly followed by a restructuring
of the organisational methods used.
Originally, the management team
would complete all the tasks required
in every individual job – from taking
the initial consultation phone call to
designing the product, manufacturing
it and travelling to install it.
Analysing the efficiency of the above
approach showed that it simply
wasn’t working. As a result, we
started delegating specific tasks to
certain people, changing production
massively. Consequently, our
employees have become specialists in
their own departments or with their
own machinery, increasing both the
speed of production and the quality of
the end product.
We understand how vital communication
is within the workplace, in order to
ensure a safe environment for all who
work there. Verbal communication within
the company will often be in the form of
open meetings, at which management
and employees will sit as a team and
discuss upcoming projects. One-to-one
meetings will take place where more
privacy is required, and written email
communication is used when necessary,
allowing the passing on of important
messages. Anything HR related will be
communicated via a written letter, to
ensure full understanding and privacy
and to provide both management and
employees with a paper trail.
Challenges faced and overcome
Finding quality staff who can cope
with the demands of the career
and who were diversely skilled to
produce products with varying metals
is difficult. The introduction of an
apprenticeship scheme has eased this,
allowing us to train up new employees
to our high standards. We are always
trying to push boundaries. Being
the first to try something new has
allowed us to overcome numerous
complex technical challenges in the
past, as a result of our research and
Until 2016, we did not take part in any
external marketing for the company
or our products. Since then, we have
hired a PR and marketing company
that takes care of all of our news,
social media accounts and advertising.
This has had a direct impact in the
form of an expanding customer base.
We have had to re-evaluate our input
and output continuously over the
previous four years to ensure maximum
returns. Our analysis of jobs showed
inefficiency, which prompted inward
investment in new manufacturing
process technology, equipment
and training that has resulted in a
significant decrease in manufacturing
costs on each job.
The Potting Shed, Harrogate
– we manufactured and
installed the seamless copper
bar top with bespoke front
29HOPEFIELD FAB |
BEST PRACTICE REPRESENTATIVE 2019
A major financial challenge has also been
the lack of capital to fund upcoming
projects. As a means to overcome
this, projects relied heavily on invoice
financing. Thanks to years of hard work
and dedication, the company have a
capital that has enabled us to end this
system, so that now we only take an
upfront deposit payment of 30 per cent
with the rest payable upon completion.
How we achieved our success
Our biggest achievement to date has
been our growth and development,
with our turnover increasing year on
year. Our turnover more than doubled
between 2014 and 2017, from
£400,000 to £1,150,000.
Our ever-expanding client base is
directly attributable to our new
internet presence and social media
profile. We receive internet enquiries
on a daily basis, which result in orders
and ultimately new long-term clients
across the UK and into Europe. Our
dogged determination to push the
boundaries by embracing the latest
technology and developing new
techniques will cement our continued
presence in the industry sector.
The impact of our successes
on the industry as a whole
We are proud to be industry leaders
in this sector. We use the most
diverse range of materials of any
metal fabrication company in the
region and our ability to merge the
latest technology with traditional
craftsmanship, innovative thinking and
a wealth of experience has forged our
position in the industry.
Competitors either have to give up
or catch up – we have raised the bar
and set a precedent that other metal
fabrication companies have to follow,
thereby initiating continued change
in the industry. Our apprenticeship
scheme also provides a unique insight
into the industry for young people
wanting to undertake a career in
manufacturing, and one that they
won’t receive elsewhere. This insight
will help us build for the future.
base is directly
First world war medics
pulling a stretcher in the
Fusiliers Museum, Bury – the
feature was part of “Britain
Where Hopefield Fab Ltd
Where Hopefield Fab Ltd
want to be
Cost – how do/can we be
Industry leaders – how can
we ensure we are one step
Differentiation – how
do/can we differ from
Pioneering / initiative –
what can we do next?
Clear strategic plans
Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review
This year’s Parliamentary Review reflects on a tumultuous and extraordinary year, globally and nationally. As well as being an MP, I am a keen student of history, and I am conscious that 2020 would mark the end of an era. It will be remembered as the year in which we concluded Brexit negotiations and finally left the European Union. Above all, it will be remembered as the year of Covid-19.
In our fight against the pandemic, I am delighted that our vaccination programme is beginning to turn the tide – and I pay tribute to the British businesses, scientists and all those who have helped us to achieve this. But the virus has dealt enormous damage, and we now have a duty to rebuild our economy.
We must ensure that businesses are protected. We have made more than £350 billion available to that end, with grants, business rates relief and our furlough scheme supporting more than 11 million people and jobs in every corner of the country, maintaining livelihoods while easing the pressure on employers. The next step is to work with business to build back better and greener, putting the net zero carbon challenge at the heart of our recovery. This is a complex undertaking, but one which I hope will be recognised as a once in a lifetime opportunity.
Through the prime minister’s ten point plan for a green industrial revolution, we can level up every region of the UK, supporting 250,000 green jobs while we accelerate our progress towards net zero carbon emissions.
With our commitment to raise R&D spending to 2.4% of GDP and the creation of the Advanced Research & Invention Agency, we are empowering our fantastic researchers to take on groundbreaking research, delivering funding with flexibility and speed. With this approach, innovators will be able to work with our traditional industrial heartlands to explore new technologies, and design and manufacture the products on which the future will be built – ready for export around the globe.
And I believe trade will flourish. We are a leading nation in the fight against climate change. As the host of COP26 this year, we have an incredible opportunity to market our low-carbon products and expertise. Our departure from the EU gives us the chance to be a champion of truly global free trade; we have already signed trade deals with more than 60 countries around the world.
As we turn the page and leave 2020 behind, I am excited about the new chapter which Britain is now writing for itself, and for the opportunities which lie ahead of us.