26 Mar 2019
A local haulage company is celebrating after gaining accreditation to the prestigious ISO 9001 quality standard.
Express It (UK) Ltd accessed the Chamber’s Business Growth Grant to part fund its accreditation project. The company went through its final audit in December and passed first time with flying colours.
Formed in 2000 by father and son team Colin and Jason Hall, Express It has grown steadily year on year. From starting with just two transits vans, it now boasts a 16 strong fleet ranging from transit vans right up to 26 tonne curtain siders and flatbeds. The company now employs 19 people and all its drivers are trained in transportation of hazardous goods.
Jason recently returned to Express It after a period working on other business interests. He said: “After being away from the business for a while I decided to step back and take a completely holistic view of it; just to see how we operate and where we could improve.”
His analysis revealed a very well run, profitable business. It had experienced, knowledgeable staff and a good, broad range of customers.
Jason continued: “My only concern was that although we had quality systems in place, they weren’t documented or independently assessed. I think that in today’s business world that is a weakness, and I decided that we needed to put it right.”
And so began the process of working towards, and gaining the ISO 9001 accreditation.
Jason reflected on the start of the project: “My first job was to get “buy-in” from the staff. No one told us to get an ISO accreditation, but I wanted to demonstrate to the world that Express It operates to the highest standards. Once I got that message across, everything fell into place and the rest is history.”
The ISO system is already proving its worth to the company as Jason explains: “We have a very diverse range of customers and cargos. We do deliver anything from small parcels to full loads throughout the UK, and air and sea freight worldwide. Basically, if you have something to move, we can move it.
“With the ISO system in place, we have complete traceability of every part of the operation. So, if we do encounter problems, we can rectify them, and importantly make sure they don’t re-occur.”
Funded by the European Regional Development Fund, the Business Growth Grant is available to SMEs based in, or moving to St Helens or Halton and operating in a business to business environment. It can provide up to 35% grant funding towards the cost of consultancy covering a wide range of projects.
Jason adds: “The whole process is very straight forward. The procurement process was particularly good and enabled us to fully explore the market before choosing our consultant.”
Express It is a long-standing Chamber Member and has provided a range of benefits for Express It.
Jason says: “St Helens Chamber has been fundamental for us, especially over the last six months. As well as the grant, we’ve had marketing support through the Business Growth Programme and help with employing an Apprentice. Without a shadow of a doubt I would recommend St Helens Chamber to anyone.”
To find out more about Express It (UK) Ltd visit www.dedicateddelivery.co.uk