REFLECTIONS ON 2021 FROM OUR CEO
To all our staff, clients and partners,
It is impossible to look back on 2021 without acknowledging the challenges we’ve all faced over the last two years. This is the first Company update since the pandemic began, reflecting the heads down, all hands on deck approach we’ve taken throughout the pandemic. I can’t tell you how nice it is to raise our heads above the parapet and update you on some of the key news at GSS.
The last two years have challenged us all in ways we could never have dreamt of, requiring us to dig deeper than we ever thought possible. We’ve been kind to each other, looked out for one another and pulled each other through when we’ve seen someone struggle. Selflessness, kindness and hard work have been in abundance.
The biggest test for me personally has been to find the right time to acknowledge the support you’ve all shown as it’s never felt like it’s over, never the right time to take that sigh of relief and enjoy the moment. Every ‘win’ has been burdened with an underlying fear of what’s around the corner. I feel now is the time to express my gratitude for the incredible support and commitment you’ve shown to me, one another, and GSS.
We’ve persevered – each and every one of us – and grown in ways I could never have predicted in a business plan. Through sacrifice and hard work we’ve got through the worst economic downturn in recent history with our business intact, our reputation stronger than it’s ever been and a workforce which I am proud to preside over.
If 2020 was the year of survival, 2021 was the year of growth and development. Some of the highlights of 2021 include:
- Entering into a long-term contract with ASM Global to provide search dogs to their UK-wide estate, including Manchester and Wembley Arena. We’ve also commenced deployments at National Exhibition Centre (plus associated arena’s) in partnership with OCS Group, one of our valued tier 1 FM clients. These new relationships perfectly capture the essence of GSS; working in partnership with our clients to develop market-leading services with innovation and quality at its core.
- Following an internal exercise we launched our GSS scholarship programme, offering new recruits financial support and mentorship to enter an industry with high costs of entry. Each of the SMT was sent a £50,000 cheque (leveraging the now repaid government’s bounceback loan) and asked to write a business case as to how they’d spend this money in their department. All four proposals were actually adopted in one form or another, the scholarship being one of them. We are still awaiting the return of Kevin’s cheque, please let us know if anyone has seen him – his last sighting was reported at the Port of Dover.
- Firty new recruits, 40% growth in turnover and an award-winning contract.
- A restructure (an actual restructure, not a codename for a glut of sackings!) of the senior management team to allow a focus on delivering operational excellence and recruitment. We are part-way through this work and will update you on key changes in the coming months. Recruitment opportunities can be found here.
- Maintaining our KPI scores and customer satisfaction despite unprecedented challenges in recruiting and retaining staff. We continue to focus on recruitment and the well-being of our staff.
- The welcoming of Tom Jackson and Alia Lodhi to the head office team.
- We said goodbye to long-standing staff members Andrew Findlay-Stewart and Anne White. We wish them well in their next steps and remain thankful to them for their years of service with us.
- Continued adherence to and support for IR35 legislation, ensuring that self-employment is abolished in our industry and that our staff are employed under the correct terms. We could not do this without the support of our clients, who continue to help us and other companies adhere to the legislation.
This coming year will see us focus on recruitment, innovation and sustainable growth.
Thank you for all the support that you’ve given this year. I’m humbled and incredibly grateful to you all.