Kyle Hollyomes founded KBH Building Services Ltd (KBH) in 2014 as a one-man operation and small-scale provider of building services to the residential and commercial sectors in East London. Today, the company is still wholly owned by Kyle, and it has grown into a leading contractor to the largest housing associations and construction companies in the UK, now working with over 100 employees, operatives, and sub-contractors, and turning over £17m per year. Now seeing well-deserved success within the Greater London Enterprise Awards 2023, we speak to Kyle to learn more about his award-winning firm.
KBH Building Services strives to be a leader in its field, providing an array of outstanding construction services extending from maintenance and void refurbishments through to fire safety works. With core values of ‘honesty’, ‘ambition’, ‘empowerment’, and ‘caring’, it is a medium-sized business dedicated to delivering best-in-class services, whether it’s in the quality of work or the administration behind the scenes. Its team strives to achieve complete client satisfaction by consistently completing all projects – no matter how big or small – on time, within budget, and to the highest possible quality.
Since its establishment, KBH has expanded to incorporate its own manufacturing sites in the UK and Bulgaria, from which it produces industry-certified door sets and windows under its own name. It manufactures and installs fire doors and windows, and carries out refurbishment works of kitchens, bathrooms, and general voids; fits safety flooring; provides fire stop solutions; as well as completes other general works such as decorating, plastering, and internal wall insulations.
Within KBH’s offering, it is simply not enough just to make profit; it is devoted to making sure it really adds value to everything it does, as Kyle explains, “When replacing an old door set with a new one, we always make sure the product we are bringing would keep the resident safe in their home. We know we have achieved that when someone has tried to break into a client’s home and the door set – due to its certified design, manufacturer, and lab-tested performance – withstands the attack and prevents entry. We are happiest then, not because of the incident occurring, of course, but because our product kept someone safe in their home.
“We definitely believe that our work has a duty to be carried out well, as ultimately it is our community members who suffer from poor fire safety and security measures, and we can contribute to that not being the case. That, together with our social responsibility programme, ensures that the social bottom line is also “profitable”.”
As part of its social responsibility, the company is also dedicated to working as environmentally-friendly as possible, by reducing waste; recycling materials; replacing old vehicles with newer electric ones; using IT algorithms to optimise schedules and routes of operatives to reduce travel for work; and always keeping an eye on its supply chain for more sustainable materials. Additionally, KBH is currently in the process of adding solar panels to all its manufacturing sites in the UK and Bulgaria, so that all energy used in manufacturing is green.
With regard to the IT aspect, Kyle feels it is very important to bring this technology into the SME end of the construction industry. KBH has created an order creation tool which allows a product “passport” containing all information including a 3D image, QR code, and details about materials used to be instantly generated at the time of survey onsite – and with a simple click of a button, all orders can be sent to manufacturing automatically.
“The tool has increased the speed with which an order goes from survey at site to manufacturing, therefore reducing lead times and at the same time creating a product record which can be measured and checked for compliance, quality, and proof of order,” explains Kyle. “The tool also allows database creation which supports management decisions, as being able to generate tables easily with all past orders and all their details allows a data analytics team to spot trends, such as what materials to stock more or less of, what client preferences are, and evaluation of exact time from survey to order to installation. And, of course, for future reference and maintenance, by simply scanning the QR code on the product, we can obtain all this history and know exactly which part or component we need without even attending site to check.
“This IT tool is the foundation for a much larger technology project under development currently.”
Highly evident is KBH’s innovativeness, and it comes hand in hand with being able to forecast what the future holds. In Kyle’s words, “KBH has a long-term vision in an industry full of short-sighted competitors.” The company seeks to identify risks and challenges in advance of them happening, and looking into a solution or contingency before any issues can materialise – all in order to achieve the goal of never letting the client down.
Contributing to this is the firm’s ability to manage its finances responsibly, so it can save cashflow. This enables it to buy materials in bulk and store them should periods of shortages arise, allowing it to continue its operations and not delay works. It also endeavours to control its supply chain by investing in logistics, vehicles, drivers, equipment, and tools, so it can guarantee to clients that its products and staff will arrive each day and deliver service on time and on budget.
KBH invests in itself and its staff, too, so that proof of competency can be provided to clients, such as NVQs for its operatives in their respective fields, and quality, environment, and health and safety procedures to ISO standards for its policies and procedures. This is in addition to product certifications from industry-leading UKAS-certified bodies for Certifire, Certisecure, BM TRADA Q-Mark, Enhanced Security, and Secured by Design. Together, these show the client that the quality and safety of its products and their installation and fit are not only a target for a company, but are pillars of its strategy and vision. Not only this, but this year, KBH was certified to PAS2030 and is one of the only three (at the time of writing) companies in the UK which manufactures and installs doors and windows for retrofit projects that require measurable improvements in energy efficiency.
With Kyle at the helm, KBH cultivates a strong, loyal, and reliable workforce, very much believing in the value of each staff member and coming together as one team. Kyle gives us an insight into how this is the case. “The triple bottom line approach is that anyone who is part of the KBH team is fully supported by the company at all times,” he begins. “It really supports every member of the team to achieve their personal life goals alongside its own business goals. This is something that is not present in many much bigger companies and truly sets KBH apart.
“An example of this in practice is offering employees and connected parties the opportunity to get professional independent financial advice, the cost of which is covered by the company. The company not only uses its financial resources to provide this, but also often educates its staff on the benefits of such a service. As the company performs well, it grows, invests in training and competency and its employees, thus is able to do more and earn more.
“With proper financial advice, they are able to save, plan better for their pensions, children’s futures, and structure their home finance in a way that, until this programme, was elusive to most staff. This is something that I have been involved in personally and it makes me very proud when I see our team members reduce their mortgage costs, or optimise their pension provisions, or just generally keep a positive credit history due to proper handling of personal tax returns.
“The result of this is a company culture which ensures phenomenal success and a happy workforce. No one has left the company in the past three years and the team keeps on growing.”
With such robust management and employee care in place, KBH is set up to succeed – even as an organisation amidst very tough economic conditions. KBH is an example of how, despite these tough economic conditions, if a company has the right strategy and a clear vision of what is important and valuable to its market and customers, it can double its revenue year on year, add new verticals to its operations, and make substantial investment in key areas that truly add value.
Ultimately, it has become very clear just how deep the core value of ‘care’ really runs in KBH Building Services, whether it’s for its quality of work, its team, its clients, or the environment. And it extends beyond the company, with it also being very committed to the communities it works with. KBH has multiple sponsorship programmes ranging from grass roots sports programmes to social works to communal projects.
There is no denying the way this organisation shines and how it is so very deserving of its award win and the bright future that lies ahead. Now, as Kyle and the team take a moment to bask in the glory of their award win, he shares his closing comments: “The quality of our doors and windows, the commitment to the end-user (the actual resident), as well as the client (the housing manager or association) are unparalleled in my view. People are safer in their homes, due to companies like KBH actually caring about the quality and performance of its products. The company cares because it is from the community, and we always think if we were the client, what would we like to experience and see from the service and product?”
For further information, please contact Kyle Hollyomes or George Karaargirov. Visit the website: www.kbhbuildingservicesltd.co.uk