Our finalists in this category range from medium-sized family firms to multinationals, but they all share a commitment to excellent service and investment in their people.
Specialists 2017 Equipment Advante
Last year’s winner continues to innovate with its site welfare systems. Advanté introduced the EcoLogic welfare unit in 2016, which automatically manages power usage to reduce running costs and site carbon footprints.
Advanté has also displayed a firm commitment to increasing diversity in the industry: 37 per cent of its workforce are women, which is above the industry average, and the company is now targeting a 50:50 balance.
Specialists 2017 Equipment Arco
Arco’s development doesn’t just focus on the safety standards of its own equipment, but those of the entire industry. It has invested in a facility in Hull where it can test equipment from any supplier.
The company has dedicated itself to exemplary operating standards by signing up to the Ethical Trading Initiative, which aims to ensure fair working conditions throughout its supply chain. Last year also saw Arco launch its first range of PPE designed specifically to fit women.
Specialists 2017 Equipment Bull Products
Bull Products is an independently owned manufacturer and importer of life-saving products for the construction industry, including fire protection, fall arrest equipment, environmental products and first aid solutions.
In 2016, its Cygnus Wireless Alarm System was used on a range of high-profile projects involving major contractors including Bam Construction, Lendlease and Mace.
It was also used on Laing O’Rourke’s redevelopment of the Westgate Shopping Centre in Oxford, helping deliver a large and complex project.
Specialists 2017 Equipment Garic
Garic places emphasis on the environmental credentials of its plant and welfare facilities. In 2016, it launched a solar-powered drying room, which has shown in trials to consume 86 per cent less energy.
The company has responded to demand for more environmentally friendly solutions by suspending manufacture of its diesel-powered cabins in order to increase the use of its Eco Series Plus units.
The company has also invested £150,000 in a new system to improve customer response times.
Specialists 2017 Equipment Hilti
Innovation has been the driving force for the equipment supplier Hilti, with the company investing 4-5 per cent of its revenue in R&D every year.
Among the notable results of this innovation is the BX3, described as the world’s first battery-powered direct-fastening tool for concrete and steel applications. Beyond supplying tools, Hilti’s ON!Track software helps contractors manage their assets, so they know what they have, who has it and what condition it is in.
Specialists 2017 Equipment Kayleigh Plant Hire
Kayleigh Plant Hire
This family-run business embarked on an ambitious improvement programme in 2016, putting health and safety and professionalism at the centre of its operation.
Kayleigh invested £2.5m in a new fleet of excavators, specifying additional safety features beyond the industry standard and meeting emissions standards due to be implemented in 2019. It has also introduced a series of training initiatives to ensure staff are practising the latest health and safety standards.
Specialists 2017 Equipment Nationwide Platforms
Access rental company Nationwide invested £27m in new machines in the first half of 2016, building on the £47m invested in 2015.
This saw the introduction of safer equipment, the most notable of which is the SkySiren PCS, the first pressure sensing system offering double protection for operatives using mobile elevating work platforms.
Nationwide demonstrated a clear focus on customer satisfaction and introduced the Satmetrix system, which collects customer feedback on every single hire.
Specialists 2017 Equipment RMD Kwikform
RMD Kwikform only entered the ground shoring market two years ago, but it has quickly distinguished itself as a leader in the field.
The company’s ground shoring equipment meets the highest EN1090 standard across the range and it employs high-yield steel in its manufacture to keep weight and transport costs down. The company has also employed virtual and augmented reality technology to allow clients to view Kwikform products in-situ from the comfort of an office.
Specialists 2017 Equipment Uni Safe Access
Launched in 2011, Uni-Safe Access has quickly built a strong reputation in the permanent access installations market. The company puts client satisfaction at the centre of its operations, offering services such as free surveys anywhere in the UK. The company boasts a 100 per cent retention rate as a result of this.
The rewards of Uni-Safe’s dedication to customer service are evident in its turnover, which has increased from just over £250,000 to more than £1.7m in four years.