Dan James, Owner of Quantum Electrical, explains why he believes investing in ongoing development is the only way to maintain the high standards that he and his clients expect from every member of the team.
Quantum Electrical is committed to being the best in the business. To achieve this, it needs high calibre electricians who are performing at the top of their game. We pride ourselves on delivering outstanding service on every job and our clients expect to have someone with the relevant experience carrying out the task in hand – it’s all about the right person doing the right job at the right time.
This consistent level of service can only be delivered if every member of the team is well trained. We only employ electricians with at least five years’ post apprenticeship experience or who we have trained ourselves and has successfully completed a full, nationally recognised apprenticeship.
In our business, showing due care and diligence to our customers is paramount. I learnt the true value of training during my career as a firefighter – if you attended an incident and could not perform adequately because you weren’t properly trained, you could face professional negligence. I’ve carried this learning into my own business philosophy.
We recognise that CPD is essential to the business – if we have good engineers on the road, we have happy customers who pay promptly and recommend us. We can then pay our electricians well and retain high quality staff, which impacts positively on the bottom line – it’s a virtuous circle.
Our strategy towards training revolves around understanding the industry inside-out so we can keep our training relevant. We constantly monitor new developments and regulations and liaise with industry bodies such as the NICEIC. We then develop bespoke training to best meet the needs of our team – be it a week-long practical course or a half hour team meeting to discuss latest regulations and how to implement them as a company.
We also invite manufacturers to visit our premises and conduct product training, which is complemented by on-the-job technical support, making the learning process very fluid.
Another effective way of sharing best practice is through cascade learning – the staff teaching one another their specialisms and lessons they have learnt on the job. This is also great for team building. We also recognise distance learning as a valuable training tool and give our staff the opportunity to participate in learning packages that interest them – personally as well as professionally.
Electricians deal with people on a daily basis. This requires certain skills which you can’t learn on a course – they’re acquired through life experience. We make ‘reasonable adjustment’ in the work place to accommodate our staff’s personal interests – from taking an extended holiday to experience other cultures to participating in competitive sport or charity work. This flexible attitude helps to keep the team motivated.
At the end of the day, learning is not just a process – it’s a state of mind. At Quantum we encourage this process however we can and are always looking for, and learning of, new ways to do it.