Managing Director’s Views – May 2012

Welcome to our 2nd news letter of 2012. I hope things are generally as positive for you as they are for GPW.

The first quarter of 2012 has been a really positive one contrary to what you read or hear in the news. All I seem to hear is that the country is in recession again… “Double Dip!”. I really do get frustrated with this – sure things are still tough out there, but we (and a lot of other companies I know) are making real progress. There was an old story my Chairman once told me about the Hot-Dog Sales Person (you can read it at ) and I think this is definitely the best way to approach things. Think negatively and it will bring you down. Work hard and focus with positivity and you can make progress in any market conditions.

Amazingly we are now experiencing skills-shortages in certain sectors, specifically precision engineering. Two years ago you would struggle to find a job in this sector. Currently, it would seem that every precision engineering company has been awoken from hibernation and are looking for staff.

So how has the AWR (Agency Workers Regulations) affected GPW and its clients? Well actually not a great deal. Other than the costs of setting up systems and developing software, the effect has been minimal. We continue to be vigilant and ensure we follow the correct procedures to give our clients maximum protection but overall the implementation process has been completed very smoothly. I have to say though that the AWR is a complete farce. Although GPW hasn’t been affected too much, some of our clients have seen an increase in costs and I am aware of some companies, predominantly in the industrial sector who have been hit heavily with soaring costs which is actually creating less jobs for the economy – just what we all wanted!! Overall, the full effect of AWR will only be visible in 6 to 12 months but in my opinion, the only thing it is guaranteed to do is reduce the number of jobs in the UK. Until the UK government realises this and starts listening to businesses at the sharp end, economic recovery could be a long and arduous process.

GPW has recruited well over the past three months with a number of new key appointments and I am delighted to welcome one particular member of staff back after a serious illness – great to see her back and fighting fit! We sponsored the Steve Prescott 10k Run earlier this year which was an amazing success. 1000 runners took part to create a fantastic atmosphere around St Helens on the day – a brilliant achievement by all who took part and we look forward to next years event.

I’m also very pleased to tell you that Chris Kenny (Recruiter) was awarded the Top Apprentice award at the British Chambers of Commerce annual conference in March. Chris who is no longer an apprentice having graduated from the scheme was selected last year for the award and was presented his certificate on stage in front of 100’s of business people at the conference. Speakers on the day included Nick Clegg, Vince Cable and Steve Hester so he was certainly in good company on stage! A fantastic achievement, Chris continues to develop at GPW as one of the stars of the future – Well Done Chris.

To finish with, I’m also pleased to tell you that in quarter 1 GPW attracted 26 new clients which is testimony to the fact that the economy seems to be improving, certainly in the North West anyway. There certainly seems more confidence around. Contract wins and new business is always down to the efforts of the fantastic staff we have here at GPW and so a big well done to everyone at GPW for their progress to date. Here’s looking forward to another positive quarter.