I won’t tell you that last year was unprecedented. I won’t make a drole comment about ‘the new normal’ or crack a poorly-constructed joke about homeschooling. We all know what 2020 was; we all lived it and continue to do so into this year.
However, despite everything, our blue light division still produced and converted 620 vehicles in 2020. That’s only 11% less than our output in 2019, despite the two-month facility closure due to Covid-19, which came into effect in March.
We’re obviously proud of this achievement, not only because of what it means for the growth and continuity of our business but because it forced us to learn quickly. We learned a lot in the past 12 months – here are our main take-outs:
Adaptability is everything
Like every manufacturer, we had to think fast when our facilities in Bolton and Bradford were forced to close in March. While this meant we quickly had to rethink everything from delivery schedules to R&D timelines, it also gave us a completely new challenge – what to do when we could reopen. By the time government announced what the social distancing guidelines would be for manufacturers, we had modelled several scenarios for both of our facilities. This meant we could spring into action as soon as possible so that we were open on the earliest possible date.
Innovation has never been more important
As a proud supplier to the NHS and numerous police services across the country, we know that 2020 threw up new and more difficult challenges for them to face. And, while Covid-19 took the headlines, our customers were still facing a myriad of other challenges; from how to operate zero-emissions vehicles in an emergency service fleet, to integrating the latest technology into a vehicle. Our team of highly-skilled engineers has allowed us to meet more new challenges than ever before, consistently innovating without compromising quality.
Expertise yields credibility
Last year brought obvious economic challenges to the emergency services sector, so it was more important than ever for our customers to be comfortable that they were working with an experienced and knowledgeable supplier. This is where the expertise of our engineers and technicians really came to fore. Not only did our customers have confidence that we could meet complex engineering challenges, but also that we could execute projects with exceptional attention to detail, ensuring our products represented superb value for money.
Our team is boundless
And, last but not least, 2020 served as an overwhelming reminder of how lucky we are to boast such a dedicated, professional and engaged team. Their ability to be adaptable and innovative, while possessing unrivalled expertise was the key to be our success last year, and sets us up to be as strong as possible in 2021.