Page 2: Strengths
By identifying the business’ strengths, Hewden built on its core competencies to remain competitive. Hewden’s key strengths include its:
- strong brand and reputation
- market leading training and development opportunities
- flat organisational structure
- dedicated workforce and high number of long-serving professionals
- core fleet guarantee.
To plan for the future Hewden sought ways to build on its key strengths. Workforce planning is a key tactic to ensure a future pipeline of skilled employees to uphold Hewden’s reputation in the industry. One of the ways that this is achieved is through its graduate scheme and training and development programmes. The scheme looks for talented and driven people who want to build a wealth of experience so that they can progress within the company. Hewden’s graduate programme is less rigid than most of its competitors’ programmes. Recruits build broad skills and knowledge by working in all aspects of the business. This allows them to be promoted quickly.
The programme encourages graduates to be open-minded about their career path. As opportunities arise, graduates are encouraged to explore them, even though they may differ from their chosen role. Graduates with talent and who show willing could find themselves taking on further responsibilities straight away: it’s all about the individual. Hewden’s flat organisational structure means that senior managers, including the CEO, act as mentors and coaches. Rebecca, a Hewden graduate, says:
‘This was a fantastic opportunity because I was not 100% sure on the direction I wanted my career to take. The scheme enabled me, over a two-year period, to experience different business functions. I spent time on the central hire desk, followed by three months in HR, before moving into marketing where I thrived on the challenge of working as part of a small but emerging team.’
Many Hewden employees have been with the company for a long time and are rewarded with additional holiday entitlement and gifts that are personally presented by the CEO. Hewden's commitment to its employees is also recognised through its Value Driver Awards. These awards are presented to employees that have gone the extra mile for a customer. Prizes have included a trip to the British Grand Prix at Silverstone and a corporate hospitality day at Ascot Races. Effective employee relations creates open and honest two-way communication which helps create a loyal workforce. In addition, regular employee surveys aid decision making and direct human resource strategies. An efficient workforce leads to improved business operations and enables Hewden to offer services such as its core fleet guarantee.
This guarantee means that any core plant equipment ordered before midday is delivered to the customer the next day. This is a unique selling proposition (USP) for Hewden which creates a competitive advantage.