BIRKENHEAD-based Innov8 Safety Solutions is five years old – still in its infancy, says founder Alan Robson.
But its tender years belie the resourcefulness and ingenuity it has had to employ to adapt nimbly to the swiftly-changing business conditions thrown up by the recession that afflicted its formative years.
The firm has had to apply rigid focus to its core markets and swiftly hone its approach to tendering processes to ensure a steady pipeline of work.
Turnover fell by almost half and profits by more than two thirds in 2010, but Mr Robson said: “It was the midst of recession but we managed to retain our staff and carry on growing. We are focused, but also have some of the front-runners within the industry on our staff.”
He added: “I am always positive. There’s work out there, it’s just a case of having to work a lot harder to get to it.”
That involved cutting margins to win contracts: “Our fees were down. We have had to change our game in terms of how we approach and price jobs.
“We don’t work on percentage scales now, we get everything down to the hour.”
The firm specialises in construction site safety and eradicating risk from projects.
Its site safety services effectively makes the firm the health and safety arm of its client, which can be anything from a small joinery firm to big construction companies like Laing O’Rourke.
But 70% of its turnover is realised from construction design management (CDM) which applies to commercial projects that exceed 30 days and aims to manage out as much risk as possible on a job, such as the possibility of working with asbestos and other potential risk factors.