Change is something of a vexed issue regarding UK industry and engineering.
On the one hand industry has had to change to accommodate the global economy, on the other when two big companies come together there is bound to be some inertia which must be conquered.
When the announcement that WYKO had been acquired by the ERIKS Group came out in November 2006 there was obviously very little detail available at that stage about the joining of the two companies and what that would mean for both customers and staff.
The way in which the change has been managed in the bringing together of WYKO and ERIKS is a model example for UK business, particularly the engineering industry. The details of this change have been encompassed within the ‘THAT´S A BIG PLUS´ campaign which will be unveiled to the UK media in September 2007, followed by a major advertising campaign in 2008. ‘THAT´S A BIG PLUS´ is not just a flashy slogan but encapsulates all the aspects of change which ERIKS and WYKO have put in place to bring through the benefits of their coming together.
A huge amount of time and effort has been put in to educating the staff about how the changes affect them and what this will mean to the way that they go about their working lives. A series of conferences have been held around the country so that staff, from all areas of the business, can understand the extra benefits, revolving around the know-how domains which they can then offer their customers. These benefits are intrinsically part of the ‘THAT´S A BIG PLUS!´ campaign.
A small but crucial change was implemented in April 2007 with all staff being asked to answer the phone with the standard phrase “Hello, WYKO, an ERIKS company”. This was the first step in the journey to move from being, to some extent, a disparate organisation to being an integrated Group. In order to develop the 2,500 staff´s understanding of the way in which ERIKS and WYKO are moving forward has meant that more than 50 presentations have been delivered. These have included a UK sales conference, the launch of ERIKS International at Alkmaar in Holland as well as conferences for ERIKS
Electro Mechanical Services and the Technology Centres. The presentations included a marathon stint of 20 seminars, delivered over two days at WYKO UK´s headquarters by Marketing Director, Steve Bodsworth. Between September 2007 and March 2008 all of the service centres and workshops in the UK will be completely re-designed and re-branded, a major undertaking in itself. Plus, to keep the momentum going it is planned to conduct regional events in 2008 to further educate customers and staff.
The launch of ERIKS Sealing Technology offers the first definitive example of what the coming together of the two companies and the ‘THAT´S A BIG PLUS´ campaign truly offer UK industry. ERIKS has an established pedigree in the seals industry with a huge range of products, supply chain expertise and in-depth experience in materials and applications. The established branch network can now tap into that expertise with the focal point of knowledge being the Sealing Technology Centre in Warrington. This really can be seen as a BIG PLUS for UK industry.
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