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Smart invests in staff to boost future growth plans

The new management team fronting up one of Suffolk’s most dynamic manufacturers has swiftly delivered on its pledge to increase investment in its staff to underpin its ambitious future growth programme.

Smart, a Thurston-based manufacturer of quality garden buildings, appointed Matt Moss as its new managing director earlier in the year. With a strong belief in a total quality approach to running businesses, Matt and operations director Paul Sheppard identified the need to invest in four middle management positions to give them the experience and confidence to deliver their roles to an even higher standard than before.

All four successfully completed their respective courses: Chelsea King, project manager, in “Excellence in Customer Care”, Sara Gage, operations manager in “Introduction to Management Practises”, Matt Balaam, team supervisor in “Supervisory & Team Development” and Darren Norton, H&S/QC manager in “IOSH health and safety”.

Matt explained the rationale for the investment: “At Smart we are all about building quality garden rooms, offices and studios to give our customers the best possible new spaces for work and relaxation purposes.

“To do that consistently, our staff need to operate to the very highest standards possible, regards of their individual roles. A total quality approach requires both knowledge and an obsessive passion to get everything better than right.

“We know our staff have the passion in contributing to a market leading company. By successfully completing these courses, these four managers are now more knowledgeable than ever before in terms of how to successfully deliver their roles.”

Paul Sheppard added: “Chelsea, Sara, Matt and Darren jumped at the chance to go on their respective courses and all were busily applying what they’d learnt on the first days back at the site. We are already in talks with West Suffolk College to further our apprenticeship programme, to develop a specific industry training pilot and expand our further education up-skilling of existing staff.

“We fully intend to invest in all of our people and on a regular basis. This will be key to securing our exciting growth plans for the Smart range.”

Darren Norton, Smart’s H&S/QC manager said: “It’s refreshing to have a management team that is so focused on investing in their staff. The IOSH course I went on was fantastic. Indeed, I’m excited that Smart has now booked me on my NEBOSH course which I will be sitting later this year.”

Photo by Paul Nixon Photography

Sue Wilcock