October 2023 officially marks the 10th birthday of the Accrington-based health and safety compliance provider Focus On Testing.
We know, we can’t believe it either!
But we couldn’t be prouder of our accomplishments and growth over the last decade.
To celebrate the occasion, we’ve caught up with our managing director, Richard, to see how the last decade has looked like for us…
Q. Why did you begin Focus On Testing?
“It just made sense at the time! I had just been made redundant from a large high-street retail chain and saw just how cumbersome and difficult it was to manage Health and Safety compliance. It typically involved various different contractors for each job and lots and lots of paperwork.
“I knew that I could change this. And so, Focus On Testing was born.
“I began the lengthy process of gaining qualifications and experience in areas such as PAT testing, Asbestos Surveying, Pest Control courses and various other services. Over the next few years, I continued gaining new skills and qualifications until we could offer the full range of services that we offer today.”
Q. What gave you the confidence to go from being an employer to becoming self-employed?
“What a good question! I had worked within retail for over twenty years and saw just how difficult it was to manage the Health and Safety compliance at large organisations. I had also received some pretty shocking customer service over the years, and I knew there must have been a better way to do this. So, I just decided to give it a shot. Ten years later - here we are!”
Q. It sounds daunting! When did you realise it was going to work out?
“Due to our unique service offering, we quickly gained a bit of local recognition. A key moment that stands out, though, was when we won the ‘Best New Business of the Year Award” at the Burnley Business Awards 2015.
“With my tendency to sweat the small stuff and be quite meticulous with my work, we were so dedicated to getting everything right that it didn’t go unnoticed. This win definitely amplified our local reputation and shone a bit of a spotlight on what we do."
Q. What would you say sets you apart from others in the industry?
“Our unique selling point is definitely the full-service offering we provide. With us, businesses no longer need to use multiple contractors to ensure their Health and Safety is up to scratch. This saves them so much time in the long run, even just in terms of phone calls, booking appointments and general admin.
“But we also provide fantastic customer service. The team we’ve grown and nurtured over the years really is something special. Each member of the team cares a great deal about providing exceptional service to our clients, and we certainly wouldn’t be who we are today without them.
“The way we deliver our services is so unique, too. For businesses, checking when your next inspection or compliance measure is due can be so time-consuming. It typically involves rifling through paperwork and certificates to see when each service was last carried out. However, with our bespoke colour-coded stickers, business owners can quickly glance at their equipment and know when it’s next due.”
Q. What are the biggest challenges you’ve faced over the last decade?
“Not that it has been a challenge as such, but we’ve put a great deal of effort into growing our team.
The people really make or break a business, so we’ve spent a lot of time ensuring our team members are driven and motivated by the right goals. We’re very fortunate to have a fantastic culture here and people who are genuinely very passionate and committed.
"We've built our team by focusing on individuals' personal values and character rather than solely on their qualifications. This approach has allowed us to provide career opportunities to people who may not have had a stable career path before. After investing in their training and skill development, we've found that our team members reciprocate with a high level of dedication and hard work.
“It might not be conventional - but it’s worked for us!”
What’s next for Focus On Testing?
“We’re continuing to grow our team and improve our services. We’ve just had a fantastic new rebrand and website from the guys over at Root Fifty-Two - which reflects the innovative, modern business that we are. We’re also proud to have recently increased how sustainable our business model is by reducing paperwork and taking several services entirely paperless and digital.
So, there we have it!
It’s been a fantastic decade for the team here at Focus On Testing - we’d like to say a huge thank you to our clients, past and present, for all of your support. As well as to the team members who make us who we are. With a fresh new rebrand, an increasingly eco-friendly business model and an ever-growing team, we’re excited for what the next decade holds for us.
If you need a hand with all things Health and Safety compliance, please visit our new website or give us a call on 0330 088 4597.