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The Oracle Issue 6 - February 2015Delivering the latest news and information from Network VEKA

 



Welcome to the latest edition of the Network VEKA Oracle! 

Here at Network VEKA HQ, we're busy gearing up for one of our best AGMs yet!
We've listened to feedback from other events and put together an afternoon that we think will be extremely beneficial and informative... without being boring!!

The Awards Evening is proving as popular as ever, so you'll have to act fast if you still want to secure a place. There's plenty to announce and there's even a new award for this year. Email your booking form to [email protected]

As always, we'd welcome your input and any stories or photos you'd like us to showcase in the next Network VEKA Oracle: just email [email protected] with a few words and a picture.

If you would like to add your staff to the email distribution list, please email [email protected].

Many thanks,

John Ogilvie and the Network VEKA team



Have you seen the new website?


Take a look at www.networkveka.co.uk to see the valuable new resource that we've created in partnership with our award-winning Design Agency.

With all the product and guarantee information that homeowners could possibly need, there's also the option for them to activate their guarantee easily and efficiently online.

We'd love to know what you think. Let us know via [email protected]



Visit the Network VEKA Business Centre

From 12 noon at this year's AGM on Saturday 21st March, attendees will be able to visit exhibitors at the day's 'Business Centre' and talk to suppliers, surveyors, finance and marketing specialists, affiliate companies, training partners and more.
We want to help you grow your business even more.
Our figures show that, last year, Network VEKA member companies grew at 2.5 times the rate of the rest of the industry.
Speak to our specialists on the stands to see if you could get even more from your membership.



Look out for the Network VEKA Academy 

We'll be unveiling our exciting new training offering at the Network VEKA AGM! A new way for learners to gain relevant, valuable qualifications perfectly suited to working for a Network VEKA company.




Disco the night away!

The Gala Dinner and Awards Evening will kick off at 6pm with a champagne reception. Our visitors - wearing their best black-tie attire - will be welcomed once again, by Brand Ambassador Steve Davis and have the opportunity for celebration photos with the Six-Times World Snooker Champion.

The results of all the regional awards are very, very close - so there might even be some surprises on the night!
After the awards, we'll be treated to a delicious meal and then the evening will kick off with a fantastic 70s band and disco. There'll be optional fancy dress items available from 10pm and it's a great opportunity for hard-working member companies to really let their hair down!
If you haven't sent your booking form back yet, you'll have to act fast to secure your place!



Fitter of the Year

Our new (and hotly contested) award for this year is 'Fitter of the Year' with member companies having nominated their installation teams to go up against the best of the best, to be in with a chance of claiming the trophy.

The nominees had to answer an in-depth questionnaire before Austin Greene visited and observed them all on site. We've taken customer satisfaction questionnaire results into account and we will soon be announcing the shortlist of just three! These Fitters will have to complete a final test on the day of the AGM.



We're obviously doing something right...

Did you know that the end of 2014 saw members' cumulative weekly sales top £1m and registrations reach an eight-year high?
It's no wonder that our membership renewals stand at 99.2%!

Stats like these affirm that the package we've honed over the past 19 years really delivers.
Member sales totalled almost £65m in 2014.



Mutual benefits

One of the greatest benefits of being a member of Network VEKA, is the 'chain of quality' that customers are guaranteed. Network VEKA Installers must use Network VEKA Fabricators who, in turn, must use VEKA systems.

Long-standing Network VEKA fabricator Glazerite has helped South Essex Windows win a lucrative social housing contract with VEKA's Fully Reversibles. Read the full story here.



The early bird catches the WER 

We're delighted to be able to tell you about another industry first from The VEKA UK Group, and one that, as a Network VEKA member, you can use free of charge.

This is a new U Value / WER calculator, the only one in the industry to be notified by the BSI and certified by the BFRC.

The U-Value calculations should be of interest - particularly if you buy in frames and glass from different suppliers. This will ensure that you are compliant for Network VEKA and competent person scheme inspections.

When it comes to window energy ratings you need to be aware that new rules came into effect in September 2014. These rules cover the simulation of spacer bars in WER calculations and, in changing them, the BFRC effectively made results from all existing Simplified Energy Label (SEL) calculators invalid and consequently unlawful.

It is the only calculator that, observing September 2014’s changes in BFRC rules, generates valid and therefore legal SELs, DSELs for doors and notified U-Values for CE Marking.

The potential repercussions of using outdated calculators are serious. Many people are burying their heads in the sand, but CE Marking is a legal requirement for windows and doors and making false declarations about U-Values may lead to prosecution for fraud! It is estimated that currently, less than 40% of the industry are fully covered by every aspect of CE Marking.

While the calculator can help you remain legal as far as U-Values, CE marking and Assure auditing is concerned, it can also calculate window energy ratings (the clue is in the name!)

However, the BFRC has found that some energy rating users have not been charged for their SEL licences over the last couple of years. This has resulted in the BFRC asking that we make sure all appropriate fees have been paid before the energy rating warning is removed from the Calculator.

So if you promote window energy ratings to consumers and use ratings for compliance you will need to be registered with, and pay BFRC fees:

Through Network VEKA these fees (excluding vat) are:

Fabricators: £840 for 3+ window energy licences (saving £1160 over what you would be charged if you go direct to BFRC for 7+ licences). The same fees apply if you want to do door ratings.

Installers (Approved Retailers): £200 for unlimited window energy licences (saving £150 on the fees for non Fensa companies, and another £200 if you want a calculator for door energy ratings.

Another advantage for Network VEKA installers is that if you elect for Network VEKA to do your audit then BFRC annual audit fees of £400 per year are reduced to £200.

The calculator, bespoke for each installer, is ready for manual release, with an online version to follow. It only lists the systems you buy and parts that are compatible with them, ensuring you can’t generate a ‘wrong’ result. And, besides saving you money on window audits and notification, experimenting with combinations of cost-effective components could even show you a cheaper route to that all-important ‘A’-rating!

All you need to do to receive your FREE bespoke calculator is contact the Network VEKA office or, if you want the version for window and door energy ratings then request a BFRC application form from us.



Heavers of Bridport fits free entrancing entrance

During the Melplash and Dorchester Shows, Heavers of Bridport offered a free prize draw for a new door, with the guarantee that names and addresses would not be used for marketing purposes.

More than 500 people entered and the winning ticket was drawn by Steve Davis.

The lucky winners were Mr and Mrs Norris of Dorchester.
A delighted Mr Norris said “when we got the phone call telling us we had won Heavers' free draw, we were over the moon. A really lovely surprise for us to receive on the return from our holiday.”

Pictured: Director Luke Heaver handing Mr & Mrs Norris the keys to their new front door.

 



We're here to help with changes in consumer finance regulations

Network VEKA has proactively addressed changes in the regulation of consumer finance, helping member companies to continue winning the larger contracts typically associated with such funding.

Consumer finance is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), formerly the Financial Services Authority (FSA). Since the FCA assumed responsibility for consumer finance in April 2014, the regulatory regime for companies wanting to promote consumer finance has become more challenging - the process involved in applying for consumer credit licences being a case in point.

We've found that the FCA's regulatory changes make greater demands of companies that wish to offer consumer finance - so much so that many businesses have been dissuaded from doing so.

Knowing that the ability to offer consumer finance often allows companies to command orders of greater value – homeowners opting to re-glaze their whole house rather than, say, just the front or back, for example – we recognised the need to put mechanisms in place that would preclude our members from missing those opportunities.

Network VEKA now offers two different types of support, depending on whether member companies are interested in actively offering consumer finance:

Besides the offer of assistance with applying for consumer credit licences, members could instead opt to add a Network VEKA banner to their website, directing homeowners to finance providers who can potentially offer personal loans for home improvement expenses. There would be no cost and no hassle for the member company with this option.

Customers benefit from very competitive rates compared to other sources of finance, making this a mutually advantageous offering for both them and our member companies.



Guarantee activation goes online!

We're proud to have utilised the new Network VEKA website to offer the option for homeowners to activate their insurance-backed guarantee online.

The ten-year cover, which represents one of the industry's most fail-safe packages of customer support, is instated as soon as homeowners have submitted a completed feedback form evaluating the standard of work and service they received.

Previously administered solely in hard copy by post, homeowners now also have the option to submit their feedback online, saving time and postage costs and providing instant reassurance that the process is complete.



Make sure you're in with a sporting chance!

We emailed all our members recently with details of a number of sporting events including snooker, darts, boxing, ping-pong and Fishomania! These are events that - through our association with Steve Davis and Matchroom - we may be able to secure tickets.

Make sure to let us know if you would be interested as these are of limited availability and will be allocated on a first come first served basis.

Email [email protected] confirming the event(s) along with the numbers of tickets you would like and we'll check if these are available.



Turning over a new leaf

Don't forget to order your NEW Network VEKA marketing literature, now available in smaller quantities. http://www.networkveka.co.uk/turning-new-leaf-network-veka-2015/



A little bird said...

Stay social with Network VEKA by following us on Twitter @Network_VEKA or 'liking' our Facebook page: www.facebook.com/NetworkVEKALtd 

Don't forget! If you have anything to include in The Oracle next time, email [email protected]



Network VEKA contact telephone and email

John Ogilvie

07802 550288

[email protected]

Dave Hartley

07702 551265

[email protected]

Karen Lund

07801 640625

[email protected]

Austin Greene

07500 794407

[email protected]

Susan Lunney

01282 473177

[email protected]

Amanda Bentley

01282 473179

[email protected]

Rukshana Johnson

01282 473176

[email protected]

Maxine Taylor

01282 473173

[email protected]


[email protected]
Main Number: 01282 473170
Fax Number: 01282 473175

 

 

Recent News

New showroom boosts sales for Glazerite installer
Herefordshire-based installer Shane Howells Ltd has unveiled a new showroom in the picturesque town of Ledbury. Supported with a range of samples supplied by fabricator, The Glazerite UK Group Ltd, the business, run by namesake Shane Howells and his wife Clare, has relocated to larger premises next door to their original site, which meant they were able to create a showroom six times the size of the original. The new showroom has given Shane and his 11-strong team the opportunity to showcase a huge range of products to his customers, including windows and doors from the likes of VEKA, DoorCo, The Residence Collection, Solidor and Guardian Warm Roof. “We’ve been able to put together a fantastic space to show off the range of products we can install. Thanks to Glazerite, who supplied the samples, the showroom includes composite doors, R9 windows and our range of VEKA products. We’ve worked with Glazerite for a number of years and they’ve always been supportive of us as a business, helping us with a range of services such as marketing and social media support.” Shane adds: “Having a much larger showroom makes a huge difference as it gives prospective customers the opportunity to see and feel the products, rather than rely on brochures or the limited range samples I could take on sales visits. It also makes us come across as more professional and generates trust amongst our customer base, as they can actually see the product they’re about to buy. “I can honestly say the vast majority of customers don’t leave the showroom without leaving a deposit for an installation, it’s that effective!” Giovanni Sangiovanni, Sales Manager for Glazerite, adds: “Supporting our installers is very important to Glazerite, and we’re delighted to have been able to help Shane with his showroom. The finished result is very impressive and will give customers the chance to see everything Shane and his team can offer.” Shane Howells Ltd has been in business for over 20 years and carries out installations for customers across Herefordshire, Worcestershire and Gloucestershire. They are holding an open day at the showroom, on Bye Street, Ledbury, on Saturday 11th May 2019, in conjunction with a coffee morning fundraising event for MacMillan Cancer Support.
  |   Tags: installer support
Glazerite's attendance scheme pays off
An employee attendance scheme run by The Glazerite UK Group Ltd is paying dividends for both staff and the business. Launched in 2016, the scheme is open to every Glazerite employee, including new starters, as part of the group’s wider package of employee benefits. Aimed at improving attendance by giving staff the opportunity to earn rewards, the scheme has been well received by workers across the fabricator’s four sites. It has already made its mark on attendance figures, with an overall improvement of 52 per cent for the period 2016-2018. Sue Wellings, Group HR Manager, explains: “We’ve structured it so it’s a realistic and achievable scheme for everyone. It works by awarding a bonus to those with full attendance over a four-month period. Employees who manage a full year’s attendance are given a Silver certificate and, as an extra incentive, an additional day’s holiday for the following holiday year. For two years’ full attendance, a Gold award is given and for three years’ full attendance, employees are recognised with a Platinum award certificate and a further gift from the company, in the form of a Red Letter Day experience. “Managing staff attendance and absenteeism is a key objective for every HR department as it has such an impact on staff morale and company success. For Glazerite, having an engaged team also impacts our wide installer base, as it means we can continue to fabricate quality products, make on time deliveries, and ensure consistent and excellent customer service.” In 2018, 85 employees - around one third of the total Glazerite workforce - achieved full attendance for the year. Of those, 33 had had full attendance for three years in a row; over half of whom were employees working in roles across the shop floor and the vehicle fleet. Rich Day, Transport Manager at Glazerite’s Wellingborough site, was recently awarded a Platinum certificate in recognition of three years’ full attendance. He says: “It’s a great feeling to be rewarded with a bonus every few months and it was a real surprise to receive the Red Letter Day voucher. I’m hoping to use mine on a trip to London so I can take my daughter to see a show.” He adds: “I’ve not had a day off sick in my 10 years here but this scheme is a great motivator for me and my colleagues.” Jason Thompson, Glazerite’s Group Managing Director says: “The scheme has boosted morale, and our attendance figures have improved significantly as a result. Recruiting in the industry has its difficulties, so we’re always looking at ways to enhance the package we offer our employees and to attract the right calibre of staff.”
  |   Tags: Glazerite
Leading fabricator Glazerite highlights importance of apprenticeships
In recognition of this year’s National Apprenticeship Week, which runs from 4th to 8th March 2019, The Glazerite UK Group Ltd has turned the spotlight on two of its own team; an up and coming apprentice, and an employee who was a trainee when the original scheme was launched 25 years ago. National Apprenticeship Week is designed to show what a positive impact apprenticeships can have on those individuals undertaking it, as well as their employers and the wider economy. Jason Thompson, Group Managing Director of Glazerite, says: “By sharing the stories of our own apprentices, we hope we can raise awareness of the importance of the scheme, especially among those young adults who may be about to leave education and are looking for a route into work.” Laura Rorke is one such Glazerite apprentice who is using the scheme as a springboard for her career. Having completed a Sociology degree, Laura joined the fabricator in 2017 as a Human Resources apprentice carrying out the customer services NVQ Level 2. Two years on, she’s studying for a professional HR qualification through the Chartered Institute of Personnel Development (CIPD). Laura says: “Being taken on as an apprentice by Glazerite meant I was able to gain valuable insight from working in an office environment. I found it a brilliant way to get me settled into my career, continuing my studies while being supported and guided by my manager. I’ve been lucky enough to work within the HR department which I love as I enjoy helping people and get real job satisfaction from my work. “The great thing about the current apprenticeship scheme is that I’m able to study for a Level 5 professional qualification - the equivalent of a degree - and work on the job at the same time, something I wouldn’t be able to do if I’d done a masters in HR at University. “Working for an SME means the range of work I am involved in is also far broader than it may be at a larger corporate, where they tend to specialise on specific areas. Though it’s early days with my CIPD and it will take a great deal of commitment, the support from my manager has already been invaluable. I am really excited about building my knowledge and being able to apply it here at Glazerite, dealing with more sensitive situations and providing others with support.” In addition to Laura, Glazerite has a number of current and former apprentices among its 270-strong workforce, including Group Marketing Manager, Michelle Wright. Michelle was part of the first intake of the original apprenticeship scheme in 1994 and says that though the way the current scheme is delivered is a world away from her own apprenticeship, the fundamentals are still the same. She explains: “When I was leaving school, modern apprenticeships were just being introduced. I knew I didn’t want to go to university and the appeal of earning and learning while gaining some real and relevant experience was a real draw. “My first apprentice role was in an electrical components company in a team of only 20 people, which gave me the perfect foundation on which to build my subsequent career. As part of my apprenticeship, I completed NVQ Level 2 and 3 in Business Administration and Level 4 in Customer Services, alongside typing qualifications – we used typewriters in those days! “One of the most important things my apprenticeship gave me was an appetite for lifelong learning. I’ve since gone on to complete qualifications from the Chartered Institute of Marketing and an HND in Graphic Design, and have worked in B2B marketing communications roles in both global corporates and SMEs. I can truly say that it was my apprenticeship which gave me the foundation for the career I’m in today.” Michelle admits the current crop of apprentices makes her feel ‘really old’, especially the way their course learning is delivered. She explains: “When I started out in the world of work we were using floppy discs and were heavily reliant on faxes. The only mobile phones you saw were the bricks carried around by the sales team and I was sent on weekly day-release to the local college. “The internet and business emails were in their infancy, and yet today’s apprentices like Laura makes use of an online portal to study, with a few face-to-face workshops throughout the year. It’s definitely light years ahead and makes the delivery of assignments much easier. The fact you can complete a professional qualification from a recognised body like the CIPD as part of an apprenticeship really takes the scheme to another level. The core values, on-the-job learning and what you get out of an apprenticeship are still the same however; it’s a valuable and effective way to start your working life.” Jason adds: “Seeing our apprentices develop is really rewarding. People like Laura and Michelle are real assets for us and for our installers, as they are able to not only provide us with marketing and HR advice and services, but extend those to our installer base who need the help too. We are always on the lookout for hardworking, proactive and diligent people who are passionate about what they do and we’re delighted to be able to offer apprenticeships across our sites in a variety of functions.” For more information on careers with Glazerite, visit www.glazeritewindows.co.uk/trade/company/job-opportunities
  |   Tags: Glazerite

Check out the latest news from Glazerite regarding installations, products and the latest news  
Product demonstrators, security testing and information videos, you'll find it all in this section.
We have a wide range of case studies available, in this section you'll find a few of them.    

Learn more about how Glazerite can help your business grow with one of the most comprehensive product portfolios and support packages in the industry.

The Glazerite UK Group Ltd manufacture and supply uPVC Windows, Doors and Conservatories to trade customers from sites in the Midlands, Northwest, East and Southwest.

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