The Bowmer & Kirkland Group (B&K) consists of 29 subsidiary companies or divisions, mainly offering construction-related services across the UK. It has in excess of 1,400 staff operating from many offices in the UK with other services offered from locations in the Middle East and the USA, they have been ISO 9001 certified since 2000.
As a large, complex business, they have been ISO 9001 certified since 2000. Exova BM TRADA recommended them for registration following an initial appraisal and have been auditing them ever since. In fact, the true picture is more complicated than this suggests. Different parts of the business were registered at different times, with several ISO 14001 and OHSAS 18001 certificates thrown into the mix, all audited by Exova BM TRADA.
For David Gregory, Group Quality and Environmental Manager, the ongoing choice of Exova BM TRADA as a UKAS accredited certification body makes perfect sense. Of their seven ISO 9001 certificates, Exova BM TRADA has so far successfully overseen B&K’s transition of three to the new 2015 revision. Two others have had their transition audit and are awaiting approval. They hope Exova BM TRADA will oversee the remaining two in the next year or so.
The main objective of maintaining their certification is to demonstrate to clients that they have the competence and resource to fulfil their contracts. More than that, though, is the operational control it affords them. B&K’s size and complexity would be difficult to manage as effectively without ISO 9001 certification. As well as many offices, they may have over 100 construction sites on the go at any one time.
As David Gregory says, ‘With all these locations required to deliver their projects, complying to the standard gives us a level of consistency and confidence that our people are getting it right.’
B&K is one of Exova BM TRADA’s larger clients. The same team of three auditors turns up every time, meaning that they are already up to speed with its operations from day one, a fact David Gregory appreciates. “They fully understand our business, our senior managers, our key
liaison staff and our personalities. As a consequence their visits are more relaxed, less intrusive and help our staff embrace the process.”
B&K is a professional organisation, its staff expected to deliver the high quality services day in, day out. It’s important for B&K that their compliance auditors respect and reflect that attitude. David Gregory likes their open, fair-minded approach to resolving the inevitable niggles uncovered during visits. “They’re almost an extension of my team in terms of encouraging us to take the systems in a clear direction.”
With a commercial relationship that has already lasted 16 years, David Gregory describes Exova BM TRADA’s style as, “A perfect fit for B&K.”