Engineering firm expands workforce and diversifies into new sectors

Thanks to support from innovate2succeed (i2s), an engineering company which designs, develops and manufactures heating and cooling systems, has increased staffing and repositioned itself to proactively target new sectors. 

With multi-national clients such as Siemens and the National Grid, Willand-based Green Resource Engineering (GRE) is forecasting a £2.4 million turnover at the end of the financial year. 

Founded in 2011, the company is run by a team of engineers who were purely focussed on delivering client projects, leaving them little time to focus on a solid long term business plan. While occasional business reviews were undertaken, no clear resource planning took place making them purely reactive to orders. 

Following an innovation assessment with i2s project manager, David Riddell, it was identified that GRE needed assistance with the development of innovation processes and business development strategies.

Innovation specialists worked with GRE to provide coaching to move the company forward and allow it to break the business model it was trapped within. 

Coaching helped the directors implement a three year plan that gives insight into revenue, profit, resources and market sectors. Hiring a new director and two engineering graduates to add to those already in the business, allowed for continued innovation.

The work with specialists helped identify several new sectors to focus on, including water cooling and cryogenic cooling. With new sectors identified, directors were able to target meetings and exhibitions to attend and seek new opportunities.

GRE’s market strategy was also reviewed for the first time, allowing it to develop real definition of its unique selling point, rather than simply carrying on with the company’s previous tried and tested method. 

Finally, the programme provided advisory support on funding opportunities that may be available to the business.

Speaking about the help received, Richard Booth, Managing Director of GRE, said: “We wanted more control of our own destiny. The programme gave us the chance to clearly look at our strategy and how to position ourselves in the market. 

“We are pleased we did it and the only thing it cost us was time. The sessions with the specialists really made us think about what we are trying to do and how we want to move the company forward. A company of our size would always struggle to pay for this kind of support, so the fact it was funded was brilliant.”

Moving forward, GRE has recently landed a £1m export contract and plans to continue exporting. They have recently forged business relationships in diverse sectors of the scientific community as a big step towards the targets they laid out during the i2s sessions. 

The company has also begun working with an external agency to conduct market research in the newly identified business sectors, with the aim of refining its marketing message. 

David Riddell, i2s project manager, said: “We’re all so busy getting on with the day job, we often don’t get time to think strategically which is totally understandable but not in anyone’s best interest. 

“Easier said than done I realise. That’s why it’s great to see businesses like GRE benefiting from our i2s programme - taking the time to think about the advice of our innovation specialists on strategy and positioning. I have no doubt that being more targeted in the future will greatly benefit GRE.”

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