Colin Spencer Halsey, CEO talks about how we are tackling the rising energy costs.
We are constantly reviewing how we can be more productive, and ideas regularly flow from our production team meetings which include our textile industry trained fibre experts, General Manager and Account Executive.
As part of the transformation programme, following the successful turnaround of the business in 2019, we established a new work culture, removing the top-down management approach and empowering the team to become more involved in the decision-making stages and direction of the business in an open setting.
These are challenging times for small businesses in the manufacturing and textiles sector and in response to the rise in energy and production costs, our production team put forward the proposal to work longer hours over a four-day week to enhance order fulfilment and to reduce the start-up times of our machines. The proposal had the full backing of the production staff and following a three-month trial the scheme has been fully adopted and rolled out across the whole company. As a result of this, we are now seeing higher productivity levels (up 16% for the first quarter in 2022-23), quicker output, less staff absenteeism and staff turnover, and a happy workforce who benefit from a long weekend each week and enhanced work/life balance.
As a high energy user, we successfully applied to the Government’s ETII (Energy Trade Intensive Industries) Advanced Support scheme, and we are waiting to see the impact of this on our energy bills.
Our business model of offering small batch and bespoke order processing services has expanded to provide new product development and fibre testing services in response to an increase in enquiries received from all over the world. We continue to pursue our Make It Net Zero action plan having received our Carbon Reduction Accreditation in 2022, and we are investing in more energy efficient plant and machinery. We have also reduced our waste output creating our own new yarn limited edition ranges from our mill by-products which we have launched into the marketplace.