The Workforce Developer
“They are always on the lookout for ways to improve the development, not only of the current and new staff, but also within the local community.”
GPW Recruitment, members of St Helens Chamber, are a Regional Winner in the Workforce Developer category, at the Chamber Business Awards 2024.
Highly respected in the industry, their approach to nurturing and mentoring staff from ground level apprenticeships and above has had a beneficial effect on their overall business performance. After working with St Helens Chamber for almost 25 years, nearly 40% of their current staff have come through the apprenticeship programmes, with some now at senior and director level.
Dedicated to staff enhancement, GPW, in conjunction with St Helens Chamber, are in the final stages of implementing an academy for a new generation of cohorts. They are working together to refine and develop the traineeship programme into a well-rounded course. Using industry knowledge they will provide input into the skills that local companies are looking for in young people, offering the solid ‘grounding and rounding’ approach in developing a person.
Through experience, GPW fully understands each person has expectations and keeps alert to the important factor of ‘managing expectations’. By doing so, GPW sustains a person’s attitude and commitment to their own development, regularly reviewing their progress.
Quarterly Strategic Planning Meetings are held, with all staff invited to attend. Whilst informing the staff on each division’s activities, it also offers a forum and encourages everyone to have a voice. Identifying training needs, requests for activity days and understanding the financial position are all part of these Company meetings and contributes to the team’s development.
In their recent history, GPW took the step of transitioning to become an employee-owned business and are now majority owned by an Employee Ownership Trust (EOT). This decision was driven by the desire to sustain the company’s independence and values, whilst recognising the efforts of its employees and their contribution to its considerable success. The EOT also operates a forum with staff representation from each of the company’s divisions. This gives its members an opportunity to develop their personal skills at a different level than their normal day-to-day duties.
They are a Workforce Developer Regional Winner because they are always on the lookout for ways to improve the development, not only of the current and new staff, but also within the local community. In partnership with St Helens Chamber, they launched a local job board, sthelensjobs.co.uk in January 2023. In just six months, over 80 local businesses advertised on the job board free of charge, receiving over 300 applications from local people, filling jobs successfully as a result. Our hope for the future is for this to be rolled out to other Chambers of Commerce to enable similar support to local communities.
GPW encompasses the whole ethos of being a Workforce Developer.
On the back of the success of the brewery site and events, Dal then set his sights on expanding both the range of products on offer and the footprint of the business. In December 2021, Dal agreed a 20-year lease on Christchurch Spire in Coventry city centre. The unique venue serves Dhillon’s beers and ales on tap, as well as offering hot drinks and food, to create a family friendly environment.
Dhillon’s next venture was the Sky Blue Tavern, a brand-new sports bar in the city centre, in partnership with Coventry City Football Club. The Tavern is a hub for Sky Blues fans to meet and enjoy a drink, whether on matchdays or non-matchdays, and helps to generate revenue and support for the club. As one of the only dedicated sports bars in Coventry, football and sports fans can watch the latest action on big screens and in individual booths.
Dhillon’s Brewery have now also secured several catering contracts, including with Historic Coventry Trust, where they provide food and beverage operations at the historic Drapers’ Hall, as well as at other Trust locations.
The company’s vision and long-term growth plan continues to be focused on its close association with Coventry whilst securing further locations and contracts, to build a sustainable, profitable business model whilst continuing Dal’s original passion for brewing beautifully crafted beer.
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