The shortlist for the Octabuild Builders Merchant Excellence Awards 2019 has been announced with 16 builders merchants in contention for the three regional and five category awards. The Brooks Timber & Building Supplies Sligo team will be well represented at the Aviva Stadium on November 7th after being nominated in the ‘Excellence in Community Outreach’ category.
The Octabuild Awards, which have been acknowledging the best in the builders merchant trade for 35 years, have been revamped for 2019 with a renewed focus on excellence that reflect the modern builders merchant sector in terms of business management, customer service, sales & marketing, innovation, leadership, diversity, partnership and communication.
In addition to the established National and Regional Awards, merchants are now competing for five individual award categories: Excellence in Business Management, Excellence in Sales & Marketing, Excellence in Customer Service, Excellence in Sustainable Business and Excellence in Community Outreach.
The Awards presentations will be made on the evening of Thursday, 7th November in the Aviva Stadium in Dublin and Brooks Timber & Building Supplies of Finishklin Road, Co. Sligo is one of five nominees in the ‘Excellence in Community Outreach’ category.
Commenting on the quality of the entries, Chair of the Judging Panel, Liam O’Gorman, said: “Reviewing the submissions into the Octabuild Builders Merchant Excellence Awards 2019, it is clear that the industry in which today’s builders merchants operate has evolved hugely and that merchants have led the way in embracing this changed landscape.
“More sophisticated business systems, an enhanced skill base and a keen focus on the environment, health & safety and assistance for the local community feature strongly across the country and is highly commendable.”
Octabuild Chairman, Mark Filgate said: “It’s important for Octabuild that the Awards highlight to the building and construction industry the excellence of Irish builders merchants.
“We are delighted with the enthusiastic response to the new style awards this year where merchants from all over the country have put themselves and their teams forward to showcase what’s excellent in the industry.”
Local/community sponsorship, charitable activities and corporate social responsibility was the criteria under which the ‘Excellence in Community Outreach’ category was judged.
“Brooks Sligo has been involved for a long number of years in a number of sporting sponsorship,” explained branch manager Karl Kelly. “For example, we are still sponsoring a County Sligo Golf Club tournament, the Brooks Cup, which dates back to 1933.
“We also provide sponsorship to Sligo GAA, Sligo Rovers Soccer club and Sligo Tennis Club as well as many other local clubs. In addition, we’re currently involved in the running of the Sligo Summer Festival and the St Patrick’s Day parade.
“On top of that, in partnership with local schools, we provide Applied Leaving Certificate and Transition Year students with work placements and placement work for other state run schemes.
“On a national level, Brooks does a lot of charity work and Focus Ireland is our chosen charity. An annual sweep out of all the branches raised €25,000 last year. We’re delighted and honoured to be representing Brooks nationally and locally at the awards and we’re looking forward to attending the Aviva Stadium on November 7th.”
Brooks Timber and Building Supplies Ltd is one of the leading Timber and builders merchant in the Republic of Ireland. Brooks has been an institution in the Irish construction industry since its inception in the late 1700’s to today. Brooks has grown by developing a product offering in harmony with customer needs and by acquiring local businesses that share this customer-focused approach.
Brooks business is the distribution of timber products and building materials to house builders and contractors, joinery and furniture manufacturers, other builder merchants, subcontractors, house factories, and end-users (DIY) through outlets open to public, as well as through direct-to-site delivery.
Brooks product offering consists of six main product groups: Timber & Wood product, Heavy Building Material, Ironmongery and Shop products, Flooring, Plumbing and Heating and Landscaping.
Brooks conducts its operations through a broad network of outlets throughout Ireland. Brooks has seven branch locations throughout Ireland and offers expert advice and wide range of quality products to both the building professional and those doing DIY jobs at home.
Karl Kelly joined Brooks five and a half years ago and has been manager of the Sligo branch for the past four years. He heads up a team of 19 full-time and four part-time employees.
“A Red C poll that was conducted a number of years ago and it found that the top reason that customers deal with Brooks was because of the staff. A number of our staff members have 40 years plus service with Brooks. Add in the new staff members and we are very lucky to have a good mix of experience and youth.”
Karl added: “We pride ourselves on our customer service, our technical ability and knowledgable staff as well as carrying full range of stock across all categories.”
Brooks Sligo’s success in making the Octabuild shortlist is mirrored in their current sales figures.
“Business is nice and steady,” Karl revealed. “There’s a bit of confidence around Sligo town at this moment in time, even allowing for the uncertainly that exists at nationally and internationally. We’re happy with the way things are going.
“We recently added a tool hire division and we’re the first branch to have that. We cater for sales, hire and service of tools and that is going well for us. Brooks has been part of Sligo for over 100 years and we very much appreciate the support we receive from the local community and beyond,” he concluded.
Tel: 071 916 11 11
This article was published in Building Ireland Magazine, December 2019/January 2020, Vol 5 No 11