Building and indeed maintaining customer service excellence is a must, explains Jason McCabe, commercial and site director of Clayton Glass. He goes on to suggest that being a large, owner managed, independent business is also a fundamental part of the equation.

You don’t have to be a Harvard academic to understand the requirements for customer service excellence. It should be a fundamental part of the corporate culture and DNA of any business, something that we can honestly boast at Clayton Glass and indeed across the whole National Glass Group that we’re part of.

With a number of independent glass companies having been swallowed up by larger groups in the industry over the last 18 months, what bearing will this have on a sector that historically was led by local, owner, managed businesses with an overwhelming commitment to customer excellence? I would suggest that there has been a tangible shift in perception and indeed the reality, by their respective customers.

Clayton Glass has won IGU Manufacturer in the National Fenestration Awards for the last two years, which is testament to what we do and how our customers perceive the product and service that they receive. On any given week we deliver 15-20,000 products, including standard IGU’s and also products from our market leading SMARTGLASS® range nationwide and remain one of the largest independent glass unit manufacturers in the UK.

There’s a notable difference as an independent business that’s overtly outwardly facing, in that our customers can speak to a wide range of contacts within Clayton Glass, or indeed with the directors including Ryan Green, managing director and myself. Communication is critical for us as a company both internally and externally, without the distraction of any other business units or product ranges, which also means decisions can be taken quickly and acted upon.

We’ve wrapped up our belief into customer service excellence, as part of our #TheClaytonDifference campaign, which encapsulates everything that we do with our extended customer service department, that’s led with a specific advisor for each customer. We have also structured the business, so we have different sales teams for IGU’s and for the conservatory side of the business, which continues to lead the market in terms of brand penetration and also in terms of product performance.

As a privately owned, autonomous and independent business, we are also able to source glass from any of the major manufacturers across Europe and indeed from across the globe for both relatively standardised products and also those at the cutting edge of development. Again, being independent is a major plus point for us, yet we can also benefit from the synergies and buying power that National Glass Group provides us with.

We also have the resources to invest and in the last 18 months alone we have moved to a new purpose built factory with over £5million invested in a completely new IGU line, amongst other capital equipment. Increased automation and the upmost product quality also remain core to our values as a committed business to the glass sector.

There is also flexibility in terms of deliveries and we deliver to any UK postcode any day of the week, thanks to our unique logistics operation, with additional pre-midday options available. For the roofing side of our business, we’ve also just announced a #FridayFlyer for SMARTGLASS® customers, who will receive a free upgrade to an am delivery on a Friday, up until the end of October.

We are also investigating the possibility to offer a free upgrade to a 3-day delivery across the SMARTGLASS® range, nationwide for Monday to Thursday deliveries. While the industry supply standard for PVCu windows and doors is a legacy from the last decade, we’re still pushing the boundaries in terms of customer service and delivery capabilities for today and tomorrow.

Clayton Glass is an owner led business first and foremost, with customer care at the very centre of our beliefs for the supply of IGU and specialist conservatory glass, without the burden of any other product manufacturing. With a global reach for product development, local focus on service and the group buying benefits of National Glass Group, we believe the mantra of ‘think global, act local’ has never been so true.

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