Blakedale | Growth and Quality Going Hand-in-Hand
For over 30 years, the Blakedale name has been synonymous with quality. Not only quality product, but high-quality service. It’s the latter in fact, that the company truly believes sets it apart from the rest.
From humble beginnings as a family business in 1995, Blakedale has subsequently become one of the UK’s leading providers of specialist traffic management vehicles and road marker posts, and has recently undergone a prestigious acquisition by Redde Nothgate PLC. With 26 staff, a headquarters of 20,000 square ft, and a presence that spans the vast majority of the UK road network, suffice it to say, Blakedale has come a long way.
Managing exponential growth presents challenges, perhaps the biggest of which is maintaining that small-business feel and quality in a much larger organisation.
Blakedale is currently benefiting from demand above and beyond anything it’s ever experienced, resulting in an extensive build programme: over 200 vehicles are planned to come onto fleet soon.
We asked Carmen Bowley, Blakedale Joint MD, and the Blakedale team, “just how do you retain the quality amidst the demand?”
“We have always placed great emphasis on having an infrastructure that puts communication at the centre of our business.”
“Growth is fantastic, and over the years, the whole Blakedale team has worked very hard for the expansion we have achieved; at the same time, we feel very fortunate to have retained and grown our loyal customer base. In order to keep our clients happy, we have implemented protocols that facilitate close control of our operation, ensuring that we maintain the renowned Blakedale quality in a fast-moving, dynamic environment.”
“The acquisition by Redde Nortgate will clearly give us the resources we need to satisfy future customer demand without the financial constraints that can challenge a smaller business. In addition, we are fortunate to have welcomed Jon Taylor as joint Managing Director with me for a handover period. Jon will then take over then as sole Managing Director of Blakedale. Jon brings with him a wealth of experience in the vehicle hire industry, having been with Redde Northgate for over 20 years. His experience at all levels of the industry, and his strong customer focus, will mean that the Blakedale quality of service will not only be maintained but enhanced by Jon’s expertise.”
Blakedale Sales Director Dave Staiano added:
“We’re a customer centric operation, and for us it’s vital to maintain the same quality of service to all our customers from the largest PLC to the smallest sole trader. As Blakedale expands, the alignment of all parts of the business behind our service ethos is key to achieving that goal. The integrated way in which we are organised enables me to work seamlessly with Gareth (Brown, Blakedale Operations Director) to ensure our clients are always aware of the build progress of their vehicles, and to request and implement required alterations and refinements to the specification during the build process.”
“In times like these where we’re seeing sky high demand, even greater emphasis on our customer, and the quality of products and services they receive, is vital. To see such high demand is brilliant, and we are re-doubling our focus on customer service to maintain our standards in this very fast-moving environment. Any threat to our quality would be completely at odds with the whole culture at Blakedale, so the relationship between myself, Dave and Jon, and the regularity with which we consult and re-evaluate, is key to keeping that small business feel for our clients.”
Jon Taylor summed up:
“Having a business where all departments are aligned, interlinked, and communicating well is how we keep that family feel. Everyone is familiar with each other’s role and ultimately, everyone has the best interests of the customer at heart. I am looking forward to building on the family business advantages of Blakedale and adding the strength of the Redde Nothgate group . Our vision is to retain that family business feel, continue to develop the excellent team within Blakedale and provide on-going customer service excellence to deliver future growth.”
For more information please visit: www.roadsafety.co.uk