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Alan Lingwood Jr


Director’s View – June 2024

As we approach the halfway point of 2024, and to coincide with the launch of our new website, I thought it would be a good opportunity to update you on what has been happening recently at Lingwood Security Management.

We’ve had a great start to the year and been extremely busy across all areas of the business. We hit the ground running in January and have not stopped since, winning lots of new business and contracts, alongside extensions to existing contracts with Network Rail and Govia Thameslink Rail. This is a direct result of the hard work and efforts from all our management team and the staff out on the ground, so it was very satisfying to agree an uplift for staff on both contracts.

We’ve also been awarded a security framework agreement with Volker Stevin for two years (after a tender process), with another year extension if successful. Alongside this, we have been submitting tenders for blue chip companies on a monthly basis, so we are really getting noticed!

Looking ahead to the second part of the year, the hard work starts now in recruiting and training staff for these new projects, ensuring they meet our (and the clients) standards and expectations. Once recruitment is complete, we will get the new operatives out training and working as efficiently as possible. Our management team work closely together to ensure this happens smoothly, which is where I feel we are at our best.

I always take great pride when out meeting our staff with the clients on their sites, and seeing all the hard work, effort, and commitment they put in. I am also looking forward to seeing the feedback come in from the tenders we have submitted, and hopefully securing more work across the country for our operatives.

As I reflect on the sector as a whole, I feel it gets harder each year to recruit good, honest, reliable security staff, although I am proud of the staff we have working for us and they all do a great job. Like other businesses, we employ human beings and so we can all make mistakes and get let down, however I think the lockdown did not do employers any favours, as the mentality of a lot of employees has changed.

It is sad to see that some companies are prioritising cheaper prices over the quality of a professional service, so our challenge is to change their perception of how important security is. Our message is clear – you cannot underestimate the importance of using a professional company that invests time, capital, and effort into training staff to the highest of standards.

As a family business, we take great pride in what we do. We treat our staff like family and with respect, we care about them and offer many benefits to staff at all levels of pay and responsibility. Communication and collaboration are key to everything we do, and this gives us a strong focus on customer service. Our management team are fantastic and build great relationships with our clients and staff and I think that goes a long way.

We have had great success in winning the contracts with both Govia Thameslink Railway and UK Power Networks over the past year, including an extension with Govia. I am unbelievably proud of how our managers got stuck in with organising and ensuring a smooth mobilisation. Some of them were staying away from home a lot to deliver training and to ensure they were on hand for any issues or problems that occurred during mobilisation. The team effort of everyone involved has been amazing, from recruitment right through to getting boots out on the ground. Following on from this, I have seen our teams out on stations when I have personally been visiting for client meetings, and it is very rewarding to see how professional they are and look, and how they handle the difficult situations they are faced with.

Speaking of professionalism, four of the operatives working on our Network Rail Trespass, Vandalism and Welfare Concern contract covering Mobile Patrol Security have received lifesaving commendations directly from Network Rail and the Samaritans. Absolutely delighted for them and their courageous, compassionate work.

Equality is a big part of everything we do at Lingwood Security, so we were all delighted to receive our Equality / Diversity and Inclusion award for the third year in a row. We scored 86%, with amazing feedback on our community efforts, mental health support and wellbeing support for staff. Our HR / Recruitment Department work tirelessly to ensuring that we are treating everyone with respect and inclusivity, so this score is a testament to their efforts.

As I look towards the second half of 2024, I am keen to develop the facilities management side of our business. This can be delivered alongside our security provision, or as a separate service in its own right. I have also challenged the team to explore more opportunities in the rail sector, as we have extensive experience in this field and an excellent track record, if you will excuse the pun. I am also working on a plan to bring our staff training in-house, and will reveal more details on this in the coming months.

From a recruitment perspective, we are looking to take on a number of apprentices to join our team, to give new talent an option to progress through the company and learn all aspects of running a successful business. We are also appointing a New Business Development Representative, with scope to achieve great things for themselves and Lingwood Security through drive and determination. I am excited to see how this new role develops.

Looking back on what has been a very positive six months, it has not been without its challenges as well, but we always learn from every situation, stay positive and keep working hard. These are the cornerstones of the business and are what will drive us forward to a successful second half of 2024.