Looking back on 2022 with our MD, Peter Smith
The end of a year is often a time for reflection as well as celebration. We’re looking back on 2022 with our Managing Director Peter Smith to hear some of his reflections on the past year.
Looking back on 2022, what has Open achieved and what are you most proud of?
This year we celebrated 21 years of Open Contracts Ltd, not just as a team but with many of the subcontractors, suppliers, and partners that we’ve worked with for much of that time.
We started the business in 2001 during a recession, experienced another in 2008, and then a pandemic in 2020 and 2021, and like many other businesses we now face rising costs and shortages of materials, but looking back on 2022 I’m pleased that we have not only managed to survive but have gone from strength to strength.
The fact that we still managed to return a profit at year end despite the challenges of the past couple of years is something I’m proud of, but I’m even more proud of the team who work so hard to make it happen.
What is the key to that success and what makes us good at what we do?
I think it’s our straightforward approach combined with our drive and commitment to delivering quality finishes on every project. We have an experienced and knowledgeable team who really do care about every project, and our trusted subcontractors will always go the extra mile to resolve any issues ensuring our clients’ expectations are met.
Looking back on 2022, we have delivered 45 projects – 35 office and 10 industrial units – for several different clients. These projects have varied in size and scale from £200k to £3m plus. Not bad for a team of 21!
I genuinely believe that it’s people who make a space work. We’ve recruited new people into our team this year, including assistant roles that give people the opportunity to develop, gaining the skills and experience they need. In a similar way, we’ve also promoted individuals to help them, and the business continue to grow.
How does Open help address environmental issues?
We’ve recently been working towards a BREEAM ‘Excellent’ rating on one of our CATB projects and some of our sites are registered with Considerate Constructors Scheme. These initiatives come with their own criteria for how we can reduce our impact on the environment. But across all our projects we work closely with our subcontractors to reduce waste, for example re-using materials where possible, and making sure that any waste is recycled.
What is your vision for Open in 2023?
We are looking forward to a strong start in the New Year with several exciting projects on the horizon. I have no doubt there will be more challenges ahead as various external factors continue to impact our industry, but as a team we’ll work together to overcome these as we have done every year since 2001.
What are your wishes for everyone ahead of the New Year?
Firstly I’d like to thank our team, our subcontractors, suppliers, partners and of course our clients for all that we have achieved together in 2022. And I’d like to wish them all a peaceful and enjoyable Christmas and all the very best for them and their families in 2023.
And finally, are you making any New Year’s resolutions?
I’m planning to ride the South Downs Way – cycling 100 miles in one day – on my mountain bike and my training begins in January, so staying focused on that and making sure I’m fit will be top of my list. Maybe eating less chocolate will need to be on there too!