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GS House
Moorside, Colchester,
Essex, CO1 2TJ

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28 January 2021 by dom_admin 0 Comments

Nurturing future talent in construction

At GS Contracts our talented team are our very best asset. Always looking to the future, we continue to keep an eye out for emerging talent to help us take our business to the next level.

With a growing number of the construction workforce reaching retirement age – 22% are over 50 and 15% are in their 60s – and fewer young people choosing a career in construction, the need to spot and nurture fresh talent has never been more important.

One way we work to develop this future talent is through the construction apprenticeship scheme. Not only does this allow us to harness the enthusiasm of promising newcomers, it also gives young people the chance to gain skills and experience with the very real possibility of a career at the end of it.

A great example of the opportunities that can come from following the apprenticeship programme is Liam Saunders, our senior site manager.

Liam first joined GS Contracts when he was just 14-years-old, to carry out work experience.

He clearly caught the bug for construction, returning first for a Saturday job in the workshop, and then to complete an apprentice with us.

Over time Liam has worked his way up to the position of senior site manager and is a valued member of the GS Contracts family.

Liam is just one of a number of our employees who have started their career with us via an apprenticeship, gaining the necessary skills and knowledge to work in the construction sector, while at the same time benefiting from hands-on experience.

Although apprenticeships are traditionally aimed at school leavers, this doesn’t mean older candidates are excluded.

Take for example one of our talented workshop employees, Martyn Rhodes.  Martyn was 31 when he joined us. After being made redundant from his previous job he decided to sign up for an apprenticeship in bench joinery, spending part of his week at college and the rest gaining crucial experience as part of the GS Contracts team.

As in many cases, once Martyn had successfully completed his apprenticeship, he was offered a permanent job offer with us and six years on he is a key player in our joinery team.

Apprenticeships offer us a great way to invest in our people, while building a team of talented individuals with spark, enthusiasm and a real understanding of our business.

Interested in finding out more about apprenticeships with GS Contracts? Call us on 01206 793053.

22 January 2021 by dom_admin 0 Comments

Does your restaurant need a refresh?

Creating a successful eatery is about much more than dreaming up a five-star menu.

Think ambiance, comfort, lighting, how the space flows – and importantly the quality of the restrooms!

With a new year comes a time for reflecting on where you are and looking at how you can improve in the future, and GS Contracts is here to help.

While it is still a worrying time for the hospitality industry, some restaurateurs are taking this enforced pause on everyday life to rethink their space so they can come back better than ever once some sort of normality returns.

In fact, some of our customers hadn’t even got to experience what normal is like before needing to implement change.

Take for example The Athenian, a Greek street-food outlet which was a couple of weeks off opening its brand-new flagship restaurant within the arches of London Bridge station when the first national lockdown hit.

With the new reality of restricted numbers and social distancing, plans were redrawn to make sure customers could be served safely. We helped to install a contact free self-check-out system on iPads along with all the safety features necessary for our current times, including floor markings, dividing screens and distanced seating.

While The Athenian was pushed to make changes due to the pandemic, other well-established clients have had the benefit of time to identify tweaks to their set up which will create a better customer experience.

Tombo Cafe, an independent chain of three family-run Japanese cafes across London, did exactly that. Back in 2009 we fitted out the first Tombo in South Kensington, and during the first national lockdown we returned to do a redesign and refresh of the space.

Key to the project was increasing the space available for customers and improving the flow throughout the café. As well as moving some preparation elements to the back of house we were also able to reduce the counter size from around 70% of the front area to just 40% which provided much more space for customers, while still giving staff the work area they need.

At the same time, we stripped the unit, ripping out and replacing all plumbing and wiring, and completed the new design, with new flooring, new countertops and fresh decoration throughout offering a total refresh in just ten days!

Sometimes we are blown away by the creative solutions that designers come up with to transform little used spaces and help them stand out from the crowd – and we were delighted to work on one such example at Bombay Bustle.

With the design vision from the talented team at Fabled, our job was to create a new subterranean bar and dessert area in the basement of the restaurant, which could also be used for parties and events.

The result is truly spectacular with pale pink plaster walls, brilliant-cut glass screens, deep burgundy leather upholstery and a timber panelled ceiling. On top of this we also managed to manufacture and install our first ever DJ booth! Best of all we completed the fit out in just two weeks, showing just what can be achieved in a short time with minimal disruption.

If you’re looking to make changes to your café, deli, shop or restaurant then contact us. Give us a call on 01206 793053.