As we approach the end of the year, like many others, we allow ourselves a moment to look back on the year, before planning the next. We took some time to catch up with our Head of Fire & Security, Billy Robertson to discuss his team’s success and what the next 12 months hold.

It’s been a crazy year Billy, how’s it been for your team?

It’s been a tale of two halves really. As the fire & security team operate in and around vulnerable people; in care homes, nursing homes, and sheltered housing complexes, the first half of the year, due to additional Covid restrictions, were challenging, and some of our existing contracts slowed down or were put on hold. During the Summer months, as restrictions eased, our work really ramped up. We have continued to win new, multi-year contracts, giving us a solid foundation for continued growth in 2022.

You team has grown in 2021. What does the future look like in fire & security?

We expanded the size of our team, recruited more, experienced engineers, and also employed two apprentices, which is important for the future of our department. In terms of contract wins, we have done very well this year, securing a number of multi-year, multi-million-pound contracts for clients right across Scotland. Long-term contracts are important as we are building a team, with a strong reputation, and have invested heavily in training and development to ensure we remain at the forefront of the industry.

The McGill fire & security team are well-thought of in the sector, why do you think your team have built this reputation?

We have a great group of guys in our team, many of whom I have known for many years, and I am confident in their skills. The team are great at identifying training opportunities and the business are happy to support them in their professional development. Doing the training is only one part of it though, you need to have the contracts to let the guys put their training into practice so the type of work we win plays a part in this as our guys work across such a wide variety of jobs. On a weekly basis the team deliver installation and maintenance work on fire systems, door entry, warden call, intruder alarms, stair lighting, automatic doors, nurse call, CCTV, smoke and CO detectors, for all of our clients, including domestic work in for private homeowners.

What has been key to your team’s success this year?

There is a lot of factors that play a part in our success. We have a great team, including a fantastic business development team of estimators and bid writers, but if I was to boil it down to one thing, I would say the strength of relationships across the board have kept us on track. During another Covid year it was important to listen, and show understanding to both our clients and our own people, but it was vital to lead, and set the standard. I’m always happy to put in the extra effort to make things right and I know that my colleagues right across our business do the same.

What are you looking forward to most in 2022?

Apart from wishing Covid would disappear, I am looking forward to working closely with our new colleagues, who joined the business after McGill acquired The McDougall Group and Kingdom Gas Services earlier in the year. Both businesses have brough many new clients into the business and I am looking forward to taking the opportunity to tell them all about our great fire & security team in the hope of securing more new work.

Any final thoughts Billy?

Just of thanks to the team and our customers. 2021 has been another tough one but, with everyone’s hard work, and a touch of my humour, we’ve managed to make it a great one. Here’s to 2022, and to starting the year firing on all cylinders.