» Accreditation: Building a healthy environment
Originally founded in 1992, Healthy Buildings International (HBI) started life as an independent environmental consultancy, specialising in the identification and control of air and water borne pollutants. Today, HBI’s UK operation delivers high-quality, independent health, safety and compliance consultancy for buildings in the UK, as well as across Europe and the Middle East. From its bases in Reading, Wakefield and Honiton, HBI’s team of over 30 staff offer a range of specialist services including asbestos management, Legionella control, indoor air quality, fire safety, health, safety and compliance.
The marketplace for its workplace health and safety solutions covers a wide range of business sectors including; commercial property management, public and private education providers, healthcare organisations, heavy and light industries, hospitality, retail, and the public sector such as social housing, leisure facilities and local authority buildings.
Importance of UKAS accreditation to HBI
Despite the diversity of market sectors it caters for, all of HBI’s customers share one thing in common: the need for competent, reliable, impartial and accurate assessments and surveys. To assure high-quality professional consultancy services, HBI’s customers benefit from an ongoing commitment and investment in achieving and maintaining professional quality accreditations and industry-recognised registrations.
In order to distinguish itself from other similar service providers in a highly competitive marketplace, HBI elected to maintain UKAS accreditation in Legionella Risk Assessment, Asbestos Management Surveys, Asbestos Refurbishment & Asbestos Surveying and Asbestos Risk Assessment. This has been crucial in offering HBI access to previous closed marketplaces and providing it with opportunities to tender, as David Handley, Managing Director explains: “Holding UKAS accreditation has expanded both the size and breadth of contracts that HBI as an organisation can compete for and has opened the door to a vast wealth of new business prospects and contract conversions. Many organisations, particularly those in the public sector, stipulate that organisations providing asbestos surveys and Legionella control services must hold UKAS accreditation as a precursor to pre-qualifying for larger tendered contracts. This is particularly the case where clients employ third party purchasing companies to manage the pre-qualification and tendering processes.”
Operating in industries where safe and compliant built environments are an imperative, UKAS accreditation has given HBI’s customers the necessary confidence in the quality of its services. David Handley said: “When it comes to Legionella Control or Asbestos Management, there are few organisations that fail to recognise the importance of high quality standards and an investment in this process. In order to assure first-rate professional consultancy services, HBI is committed to achieving and maintaining professional quality accreditations and industry-recognised registrations. Our customers consistently observe the high standard of risk assessment works that the company delivers and this is ultimately driven by the ongoing quality checks that UKAS accreditation brings to the business.”
In turn, the increased confidence that UKAS accreditation provides has seen both the range and scope of HBI’s customer base expand. David Handley said: “Since gaining the accreditation HBI has been appointed to conduct some of the most complex and detailed Legionella risk assessments ever undertaken in the UK. Our clients have had the reassurance of knowing that these works would be undertaken in a manner that is both rigorously assessed and reliably provided to a uniformly high standard. This has a very positive effect on both top line sales and bottom line profitability for the company.”
In addition, going through the accreditation process has had a beneficial effect on the company’s internal operations. David Handley concluded: “HBI has found UKAS accreditation to be of great value to the business. Not only has it lead to an increased demand for our services (due to the higher quality standards that UKAS accreditation commands), but it has also improved and made more consistent the standards to which we undertake asbestos and Legionella survey works. Internally HBI is able to consistently challenge the way we deliver services efficiently and sets a high-quality benchmark across a large surveying team.”