Preston-based LCM Group’s company strapline is ‘Design, Build, Maintain’, which is a beautifully concise and accurate summary of the firm’s capabilities. The breadth of the services it can offer has enabled it to build long-lasting relationships with a number of leading clients that are continuing to flourish.
“Our diverse skills set allows us to turn our hand to pretty much anything, which means we’re able to operate across a wide range of different sectors,” explains Paul Livesey, Managing Director. “We believe that we’ve worked in every sector at one point or another, from domestic, commercial and facilities management; through to rail, healthcare, nuclear and defence. In the process we have built an incredibly impressive portfolio of Blue Chip clients, such as Boots, Alliance Healthcare, Biffa Waste, CBRE, TK Maxx, Vinci, Nuffield Health, LSH, the NHS and Beaverbrooks, to name but a few. This gives an indication of the range of national organisations that we work for.”
Accumulating such a stellar list of clients hasn’t come about by chance, with LCM Group’s approach proving to be an extremely good fit for its customer base. “We’re carrying out an increasing amount of work with our clients, as we further develop the strategic partnership, we have with them in a sustainable way,” adds Paul Livesey. “With a number of clients, we may have become an integral part of their business model by being delivering best in class work, first time, while providing exceptional value at the same time.”
This ability to deliver exactly what the client is looking for stems from the robust infrastructure and well-trained workforce that LCM Group has put together, all of which means it sub-contracts out the bare minimum of its activities. Instead it looks after all the individual elements in-house, which not only means it can keep tight control over the quality of the work, but also offer exceptionally fast reaction times, as Paul outlines: “If a client calls us at 2am on a Sunday morning, the call will go through to our help desk before being routed to one of the company directors. This ensures that there’s someone on the line who has the authority to sanction whatever work is required. This is absolutely vital in circumstances where the nature of the work is time critical.
“Having this system in place gives us a significant competitive advantage over businesses that rely on sub-contractors who might not have the capacity or the authority to carry out the work that’s required. Not only can we make the necessary decisions instantly, but we also have the ability to carry out the work too.”
LCM Group’s ability to provide whatever the client needs stems from the strength in depth of its partner companies that work within the aegis of the business. These include Unity Fire and Security, Optimum Signs, Structural Manufacturing Services, Always Access, GB Entrance Engineering and Eco Sol; which specialises in environmentally sustainable energy solutions in areas such as lighting and heat pumps. The different capabilities that each of these companies brings to the group means that LCM can accommodate 98% of its clients’ requests. What’s more, it’s just one phone call, one invoice and one coordinated workforce that’s involved.
Underpinning this client-focused approach is a strong investment programme in plant, vehicles and machinery, mirroring the commitment LCM Group dedicates to the training and development of its 100-plus strong workforce. It has cherry pickers from 18-metres up to 45-metres, as well as HGV and tanker units, all of which are replaced every three years to ensure it is using the most modern and up-to-date equipment.
At the heart of LCM Group’s philosophy has been an unrelenting drive for further improvement in all areas, whether it’s in the area of safety or increasing the efficiency of its overall operation through the implementation of new IT systems. For example, it continues to invest heavily in CRM technology so can now coordinate all the resources, materials and costs to provide very accurate estimates. It has also just added a piece of software called BigChange, which enables clients to receive a full audit trail supported by photographic evidence and bespoke customer alert profiles to improve communication. This gives the business yet another significant advantage in an increasingly competitive marketplace.
“Any implementation of new software is underpinned with comprehensive training for our staff to ensure the results are maximised,” says Paul Livesey. “There’s always a learning curve involved but we’re now at the fine-tuning stage having already seen tangible benefits.
“Another string we’ve added to our bow is the supply of Endo products we can now offer to clients after we became the sole UK distributor for the range, which includes EndoSan, EndoTherm and EndoCool. These products use ground-breaking new chemistry to deliver unique and significant savings to water, heating and cooling systems and will become increasingly important as legislation becomes ever stricter.
“We’re open to the possibility of adding further companies to our portfolio but at the same time we know what we’re good at and we don’t want to move into areas that aren’t core to our business. As mentioned previously, the existing suite of services already gives LCM the ability to deal with the vast majority of our clients’ requests.
“We realise that customers are only going to come back to us if they’re happy with the service they receive. This is underlined by the fact that we started with some of our biggest clients on a very small scale because we were prepared to carry out the work that other companies had refused to do. Once they’d seen the quality we could provide and discovered that we were reliable, things snowballed from there with a growing volume of repeat business.”
As its client base demonstrates, it is clear that LCM Group’s customer-centric ethos is proving to be a popular choice for companies from across a wide variety of different sectors. Given its forward-thinking approach and a quest for continuous improvement, further growth for the business looks assured.
In this year’s Construction & Engineering Awards the LCM Group was awarded Design/Build Experts of the Year 2019 – North West England