Blog: SECBE Awards 2021 finalist - PiLON

28 May 2021

sponsored by Baxall Construction


SME of the Year SECBE Award 2021 Winner & People's Choice Award 2021 Winner

PiLON’s continued success during the exceptional challenges of 2020 was due to their culture of investment in people and technology. They are securing long-term, self-sustainable growth, and positioning PiLON as a company ready to rival some of the biggest names in the industry.  

They created 9 new roles across various departments within the business.

They continued to invest in proprietary technology systems designed to simplify operations, improve services to tenants, and create efficiencies.

In 2020, they invested £45,000 in people development. Every member of staff received training, including many undergoing formal learning ranging from NVQL2 up to HNC and HND level, plus tailored leadership programmes for senior management.

They continued to support the communities in which they work, with approximately £81,000 invested in Social Value throughout 2020.

Despite the restrictions and challenges of 2020, they won contracts with new clients, maintained strong relationships with their existing clients and grew the number of services they provide to them. They maintained profitable throughout the entire year.

Their new clients were Hillingdon Council, Enfield Council and Trident Housing Association.

They expanded services for Optivo to now include Responsive Maintenance and Fire Testing, Clarion to include Electrical Testing (the largest electrical testing contract in social housing), L&Q also with Electrical testing and Silva with Cladding and Fencing – all in addition to the services previously provided.

Additionally, they expanded their geographical reach. As a result of their delivery on their ongoing Kitchens and Bathrooms contract with Metropolitan Thames Valley Housing, as of February 2021, MTVH extended their requirements to include additional areas in London and the Midlands. The increased scope totals 1000 units, 700 more than their expected allocation, and increases the contract value to over £5million per annum – a huge milestone for PiLON.

Their customer satisfaction scores were also up on the previous year at an average of 97.3% and they concluded their 5th consecutive year without any injuries to staff or contractors.

During 2020 they learned that with challenge also comes opportunity and they used the enforced closure of their operations to focus on their people, culture and celebrate points of difference. This meant that they were in the best possible mindset to respond at pace to the requests of clients once restrictions were lifted.

They have shown strength and resilience in the face of adversity throughout the Covid-19 pandemic. 0 members of staff have been made redundant and that all staff who were placed on the furlough scheme had their salaries topped up to full.

They also took risks on the people they brought into their business. Focussing on their future and succession planning, they have recruited a number of people with no experience in their sector but with great attributes and qualities that will help them to drive their business forward in the future. They are still a relatively small business but they are already recruiting, training and shaping their leaders of tomorrow.

Key facts:

  • They have remained profitable, sustainable, and safe throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • On a recent anonymous staff survey, when asked whether individuals see themselves working for PiLON in 2 years’ time, the results were as follows:
    • Strongly Agree – 62%.
    • Agree – 31%.
    • Neither Agree nor Disagree – 7%.
    • Disagree – 0%.
  • They have proven their capability and capacity as an SME company to deliver large scale projects, most notably the largest electrical testing contract currently in Social Housing for Clarion.

About the SME of the Year Award: 

SMEs are the backbone of the industry and are recognised by Constructing Excellence for their dominance of and contribution to the supply chain.  Department for Business Innovation and Skills suggest that 99.9% of UK construction contracting businesses are SMEs1 and some of the greatest innovation and best practice can be identified in this sector. More info.

Find out who wins at the Constructing Excellence SECBE Awards 2021 Summit & Awards Ceremony on Thurs 1st July 2021. Free attendance.

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