WORLD QUALITY WEEK – Realising our competitive potential at Cottam

The Chartered Quality Institute’s World Quality Week 2023 (#WQW23) is here. This year’s theme is Quality: Realising Your Competitive Potential.

According to the CQI website, the aim is to guide businesses towards achieving their competitive edge using quality improvement principles and sharing best practices. It’s an opportunity for all of us to celebrate the incredible contributions of quality professionals and reflect on both the challenges and successes of the past year. What better opportunity to share with you the practices and changes we have been working on to help our customers get the best brushes around!  

As part of our business planning, this year we reviewed our vision, purpose, mission and values to align more closely with our drive to deliver excellent quality products backed by great customer service. We hold regular meetings of our senior leadership team to ensure that continuous improvements are being made, and contribute ideas suggested by the wider business. Here are some of the things we have been working on as an outcome of those discussions..

Certifications 

We are certified to ISO 9001, which is an internationally recognised quality management system (QMS) standard. By complying with this standard, we can demonstrate to our customers that we put you at the heart of our business and have processes in place to monitor product quality, as well as identifying opportunities for our business to grow. We believe in the importance of innovation so much that it forms our purpose ‘To evolve through brush innovation’ and plays a key part of how we work with and for our customers. 

We have also recently been certified with Cyber Essentials, which shows our commitment to cyber security. Cyber Essentials is a government-backed scheme that reassures our customers we’re working to secure our IT systems against cyber-attack. We take our customer’s data seriously at Cottam, which is especially important as we want our customers and supply chain to feel confident when working with us. 

Cyber Essentials is also a tender requirement of many larger organisations, both public and private sector, including government contracts. This will allow purchasers from within these organisations to access both our catalogue range and bespoke custom brush service. 

Net Zero 

One of our main Cottam values is to “Do right”, and as part of this value, we have made a commitment to half our carbon emissions by 2030 with a view to being net zero by 2050. Our full environmental policy can be viewed here: Environmental Policy – Cottam Brush 

Net Promoter Score 

We know how important customer feedback is to ensure a quality product offering, so earlier this week we emailed our current customers with an opportunity to complete our Net Promoter Score survey. This allows our customers to give feedback on our products and customer service which we can use to improve customer experience. If you are a current customer of Cottam and haven’t received an email, please contact sales@cottambrush.com for the link. 

Supplier Quality 

Our team based at Cottam Brush in China regularly visit our suppliers to carry out quality checks of our catalogue products. By having a team based in China, we can ensure the products manufactured in China are of the highest quality, as well as building good relationships that allow us to correct any issues quickly if/when they arise. 

Catalogue Products 

When we receive deliveries from our suppliers, our warehouse follows our internal quality procedures to ensure that products delivered meet the standards set out in our product specification sheets. By regularly monitoring our catalogue products and through the introduction of scanners to our warehouse process, we have reduced the amount of complaints received and our distributors can be confident their customer will receive excellent quality products on time, in full. 

Custom products 

The majority of our custom and technical products are made in our warehouse in Hebburn, UK. We are members of Made in Britain, which demonstrates our commitment to quality manufacturing within the UK. Before custom and technical products are dispatched, they are inspected by our warehouse manager or a senior operative to ensure excellent quality. Any bought-in subcomponents are also inspected on arrival at our warehouse. 

Customer Relationship Management System

We are very close to launching a brand new purpose built Customer Relationship Management System internally. It’s technology will allow us to manage interactions with customers and potential customers and will help our organisation to build customer relationships and streamline processes to improve our customer service.

 

It is only when you look back, that you realise how far you have come and as a business we are proud to continuously prioritise quality in everything that we do.

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