The new Managing Director of A1 Industrial Trucks Ltd, Stuart Dawson, has made a big impact on the perception and performance of the business since he was appointed (first as Sales Director in August 2018 and then promoted to MD in January).
A very visible example are the new additions to the A1 fleet of service and delivery vehicles including a new Scania 19 tonne truck and curtain-sided trailer with loading ramp (pictured) and five new Ford Transit vans. The new vehicles sport modern livery and graphics in fresh green and white, which “looks a lot better than the dirty old yellow” as one member of staff put it. The new livery will be introduced across the whole fleet as old vehicles are replaced.
Less visible but certainly more appreciated are the improvements that Stuart has made to the efficiency of customer service. He has implemented a programme of preventative maintenance for each customer and now guarantees a 1-hour response time to customer breakdowns throughout A1’s large sales territory. He is also in the process of appointing a tele-marketer to boost sales, hire and service.
All this is a big change for a company that had been run by one of its founders for 35 years until he retired last year. The effect is beginning to show in better financial performance.
Stuart said: “Sales of new trucks have improved and we’ve won a lot of new accounts. Used truck sales could be better but this is down to availability of equipment. Long-term hire is increasing, and short-term hire is steady. Our service provision is standing up well in a very competitive market, and our training courses are very busy. We are working in a very challenging market place, but opportunities are still out there, and it is our job to find them.”