Extract Technology

The strength of a business is in its people.

So says Alan Wainwright, managing director of Bradley-based containment systems manufacturer and supplier Extract Technology, which supplies products to the pharmaceutical, healthcare, biotech and chemical industries.

The company actively works towards an environment in which every employee recognises it is their business and everyone has a key part to play in delivering the goals and sharing in the success.

Through an open communication culture, staff are actively encouraged to contribute at all levels with ideas and suggestions, contributing to a culture of continuous improvement.

The firm has Investors in People accreditation and holds the Better Health at Work Wellbeing Charter – working with Kirklees Better Health at Work to run regular health checks for all employees, stress management workshops and by promoting support and advice on a healthy lifestyle.

The firm also has a communications focus group made up of employees and has embarked on an initiative to improve efficiency, reduce waste, support on-time delivery and make the business and its products ever more competitive.


Paul Lees is operations director at family-run firm ABS UK Ltd in Elland

A family-run firm providing print and document management services is giving high priority to investing in its staff.

Elland-based ABS UK Ltd, which employs 35 people at its Newcombe Mill site, supplies a network of modern print/scan/copy devices to clients including schools, businesses and charities and has established a reputation for customer care, innovation and investment in both equipment and staff.

The company runs a Colleague Care incentive scheme where staff are encouraged to nominate colleagues who have gone out of their way to help them. The best examples are chosen by a panel and awarded points as well as financial incentives with six awards made annually.

In 2014 and 2015, the winners flew to Sri Lanka on a voluntary mission to a children’s home where they helped grow vegetables, fix broken water pipes and take part in IT literacy training.

Staff morale has been boosted by events including a wine-tasting event to celebrate the firm’s 25th anniversary, a trip to the races for the firm’s 21st birthday, crown green bowling competitions and team meetings with a meal and fun activity.

ABS operates flexible working where possible and supported one of its engineers who had a month off work to go to Kenya with the Army Reserve. The same employee was also able to volunteer at the London Olympic for a month.

The firm boasts a high staff retention rate which it puts down to its family values.

Quickslide Ltd

Window and door manufacturer Quickslide Ltd says its people make the difference in business.

The company based at Bradford Road, Brighouse, and led by chairman Adrian Barraclough and managing director Michael Conner, has doubled its turnover in the past four years and almost doubled its workforce to 150 in that time.

Its commitment to excellence is demonstrated by the Quickslide Training Academy, which the firm established as part of a company-wide succession planning, training and development programme to help it deliver world-class standards in every area of the business.

Marketing co-ordinator Sandra Berg said: “Our people are all accountable problem-solvers and understand this is their business and they will shape its future and share in its success. The Quickslide team consists of every single person in the business. We believe the ‘experts’ are the people doing the work and as such are the best people to consult with when transforming a business.”

The firm has instituted “behaviour kinetics” to tackle “negative” behaviour at work while seven team members have completed management studies at Huddersfield University Business School. Eleven team members have completed courses with Dale Carnegie while 42 employers have gained qualifications in business improvement techniques.

The academy had succeeded in creating world-class standard operating procedures – written by the firm’s operators – as well as a standardised roles and responsibilities template to ensure everyone knows what is expected of them.

Employer of the Year sponsor KDSL
Employer of the Year sponsor KDSL