HillsTalk May 2015

Hills team sign up for 100km Trailwalker challenge

In June 2014, Richard Taffinder and a team of eight courageous colleagues completed the Trek50 Challenge raising £4,000 for MedEquip4Kids. Not satisfied with having this conquest under his belt Richard has recruited a new team of four to take part in the Oxfam 100km Trailwalker Challenge on 25th and 26th July 2015.

Trailwalker is the ultimate physical and mental challenge, a 100km off road course on the South Downs Way. The team of four need to complete the route in under 30 hours, raising money for Oxfam and The Gurkha Welfare Trust. The Hills Trailwalker team includes Richard Taffinder, John McCarthy, Chris Grainger and Barry Jarrett, with a support crew led by fellow Trek50 comrades Mark Osman, Danny Floyd and David Mayes.

The aim is to raise over £5,000 with the help of friends and family through various fund raising events until the walk in July.

UltraTek Update

The UltraTek team have been out on the road promoting the UltraTek brand at events nationwide including the opening round of the British GT Championship at Oulton Park. The recently branded company van and promotional trailer had pride of place in the paddock attracting sports car enthusiasts.

UltraTek Racing also had its first national TV coverage during the review of the Oulton Park GT race event on Channel 4 and Motors TV. The eye catching livery of the UltraTek Racing Lotus Evora’s featured predominantly throughout the programme.

UltraTek racing paddock update

UltraTek Racing had a successful first round at Oulton Park with drivers Jamie Wall, Tim Eakin, Richard Taffinder and guest driver Martin Plowman. Plowman stood in for regular driver James Nash who had his first race of the season in the Blancpain series. In a hectic weekend that saw 12 DNF’s, the UltraTek Racing Evora’s not only finished each race but scored championship points. The team gained valuable data and will be back in action for the next round of the Avon Tyres British GT Championship at Silverstone on the 30th and 31st of May.

VMG Award Success

Warwick Manufacturing Group (WMG) hosted the prestigious WMG SME Awards at their Innovation Feast in December 2014. The awards are important throughout the West Midlands to recognise the Impact and Innovation of local companies. The companies are formally congratulated for their contribution to economic growth in the West Midlands. Hills were awarded Highly Commended status in the Impact Award category for their work on their anti-theft product.

By working closely with the WMG, SME team, Hills were able to gather valuable customer feedback and market testing on their upcoming anti-theft products.

Pendragon Awards Dinner

Hills sponsored the Unsung Hero award at the Pendragon PLC Awards which were held at the Celtic Manor Resort Hotel in Newport on Saturday 21st February. Over 400 award finalists, guests and senior Pendragon executives attended the dinner which was hosted by Rebecca Jackson, writer, presenter and racing driver. The Unsung Hero award recognises the team member that has gone the extra mile, demonstrating commitment and dedication above and beyond expectations. The winner of the award was Nathan Short from Grantham Ford. Hills were represented by Stephen Purdue and Vicky De La Rue with Stephen having the honour of announcing and presenting the award to Nathan.

New team signing the way

Since the takeover of Eyeway Signs two years ago, Hills have been applying their experience and expertise to grow the product range and business. The latest phase sees the implementation of a new team of experienced professionals. Their core focus is the dedicated delivery of quality products and excellent customer service. The Eyeway Sales Team are:

Adrian Berry; Sales Director, will be managing the strategic direction including the partnerships between Eyeway Signs and national purchasing teams.

Shelley Stokes; Internal Account Manager, will oversee the daily operations of Eyeway Signs from customer liaison to production management.

Gary Dixon; National Account Manager, will be managing group business sales and will be the main contact for customer visits and site audits.

Partnerships for Eyeway Signs

Eyeway Signs are an official partnered service of Hertfordshire Care Providers Association (HCPA) who manage training funds on behalf of the government, local authority, the NHS and other funding agencies. The HCPA help care organisations improve the quality of care provided by its members through ongoing training and visits.

Eyeway Signs are an official partnered service of Hertfordshire Care Providers Association (HCPA) who manage training funds on behalf of the government, local authority, the NHS and other funding agencies. The HCPA help care organisations improve the quality of care provided by its members through ongoing training and visits.

Onwards and upwards at Hills

We’d like to say congratulations to Nicola Gibson who was promoted to Assistant Operations Manager in January 2015. Nicola joined Hills in February 2000 as an Administration Assistant and progressed to an Order Entry Processing Clerk due to Nicola’s passion for Hills and hard work. She was then asked to take on the role as a Customer Services Assistant and then rose to Internal Account Manager.

Nicola is a highly valued member of the Hills team who has shown innovation, passion and commitment to develop all aspects of the Hills business. Nicola has also been instrumental in the MAS group projects. Nicola’s analytical ability and decisive judgment have been key to her success and the growth and development of Hills. We wish Nicola all the best in her new role.

Hills would also like to welcome Satinder Lahory who joined in December 2014 as Sales and Marketing Assistant. Satinder will be managing social media platforms for Hills Numberplates and Eyeway Signs, assisting in various marketing projects and providing sales administration support for the core side of the business.

Another new member of the Hills family is Zakar Razaq who is on a Business Admin Apprenticeship. Zakar is currently studying Business Administration at Birmingham Metropolitan College and joined Hills in January. He has already been involved in several projects including fundraising for the TrailWalker challenge and has a bright future.

Defibrillator Training

Hills have now joined the growing ranks of conscientious companies who have their own defibrillator on site. This essential piece of equipment is on hand should any member of the public or staff suffer a Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) whilst on the premises. Statistically, 5% of all SCA’s will occur in the workplace affecting 100 people every week in the UK alone. Every minute of delay from the onset of an SCA to defibrillation diminishes the chances of survival by 10%. After 10 minutes, the chances of survival are almost zero. With the average response time of emergency services in the UK being 10 minutes, Hills see this as a necessity for the workplace and have further invested in having their first aid staff trained to use the machine.

Team News

The team have been enjoying lots of cake over the past couple of months with long service awards, new babies and a half century birthday celebrations.

We would like to congratulate Chris Grainger, Sarah Jenkins, Ray Pitt, Bobbie Thompson, Bejay Vincent and Ricky Wilks for their 5-year service award.

With an impressive 15 years’ service now tucked under their belts, congratulations to Julian Caine, Nicola Gibson, Mike Pope, Shelley Stokes and Kath Jenkins.

Congratulations to Nicola Abraham, Tariq Malik, Danny Caffrey, Barry Jarrett and their partners who are all very proud new parents, if not a little sleep deprived.

And lastly, Richard Taffinder celebrated his 50th birthday in March with a bespoke UltraTek cake.

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