J. Harper & Sons (Leominster) Ltd was founded in 1898 by Joseph Harper and has become a well-known name throughout the Midlands with a reputation for delivering high quality construction projects. In 1995 the family sold the Harper Group of companies and, under its current owners, it has restructured to become a modern, forward thinking construction company with well-resourced and highly motivated staff, whilst still retaining its traditional values.
Areas of Work
The company carries out work across a wide spectrum of construction types including new build and refurbishment in the health, education, leisure and retail, commercial, industrial, public buildings, affordable and private housing, and small work projects under all the well-known procurement routes. Our organisation has no real geographical boundary although generally carries out projects within a 70 mile radius of our regional offices.
Commitment to Quality
The group recognises that quality is fundamental to market development and has therefore invested in, and adopted, Quality Assurance Procedures that achieve external accreditation to ISO 9001. This has recently been reinforced by 3 No. Regional Awards presented to the Harper Group by our Local Authority Clients for Quality in Construction.
Commitment to Safety
The Group has well founded Site Management and Health and Safety procedures to ensure that managers throughout the group adopt a consistent approach to these key disciplines. The procedures are underpinned by regular meetings and updated to reflect changes in legislation and improvements in company disciplines. These measures compliment and improve upon our existing internal audit systems and continuous external audit by H & G Safety Group. We are pro-active in adopting industry standards and are accredited under CHAS with a Constructionline approval to a notation value of £10 million.
Effective communication is fundamental to the successful management of a project. Our existing communication policy sets out the requirement for a clear, professional, honest and proactive approach of mutual problem solving and open reporting. This policy extends through the organisation and, in our view, is one of our key organisational strengths.
The company is committed to sustainability of the environment and recognises that its activities can have a major impact. We are committed to minimise any harmful effects to the environment by adopting a responsible attitude. We are externally audited and accredited to ISO:14001 in regard to our Environmental Management Procedures and actively promote environmental awareness, receiving national recognition on a recent partnering project.
Our company places a high emphasis on cost control, both internally and externally, in conjunction with our Clients. We believe our early involvement helps to maximise cost benefits for the Client. We are prepared to assist in the production of a detailed elemental cost framework or cost plan at an early stage which forms an effective cost control document at both pre and post commencement stages.
We place a high emphasis on developing and maintaining strong local supply chain links with subcontractors and material merchants. The company has introduced measures to commit its suppliers and subcontractors to a mutually beneficial partnership. These measures seek to ensure that the company’s commitment to quality, safety and programme times command the same approach from all the parties to our contracts.
We have developed both informal and formal partnership agreements with many local companies and take a keen interest in the development of their businesses, fostering close relationships. By using local suppliers and subcontractors, we believe that not only do you obtain cost benefits, but also gain higher level of job interest, satisfaction and overall involvement.
Specialist Subcontract Procurement
Our specialist subcontractors are selected and procured for specific projects through a procedure which clearly identifies their suitability, thus maximising their overall performance. Initially subcontractors are targeted from a well-established database that is regularly updated on completion of projects, indicating the subcontractor’s performance and competence in areas such as quality, programme, cost, health and safety, Constructionline and CHAS.
We carry out pre-contract meetings to identify key aspects, i.e. programme, information, quality, co-ordination, relevant health and safety along with the completion of standard agendas, ensuring that subcontractors can comply with project delivery.
Benchmarking – KPI’s
The company adopts a procedure for benchmarking with clients and design team members. By staying in touch with our customers, we ensure that we are giving them the best service possible and that any issues that may arise are dealt with efficiently and quickly.
We have developed, through our framework agreements, specific practices and ideas that have worked well for both ourselves and our clients. Supply chain procurement procedures, open book reporting methods and a disciplined system of in-house KPI’s driving improvements are all examples of sound good practice that have been introduced.