Our people

Our People

Howdens was founded on the principle that it should be worthwhile for all concerned. That means employees, trade professionals, homeowners, tenants, communities and shareholders can trust us to fulfil our promises on service, product innovation and value for money.

This strategic principle has shaped our business for over 20 years and attracted people with the type of skills – creativity, communication and customer service, for example – that have helped to grow the business to over 10,000 employees.

There is a strong entrepreneurial ethos where success is encouraged, and we recognise the value of investing in our people through comprehensive training, developmental courses and inspirational managerial support.

That, along with a competitive salary, share opportunities and exciting rewards, are among the reasons why people enjoy working for Howdens – and why the Sunday Times has named us as one of the top 25 best big companies to work for.


Group Employees 2021


Apprentices in training in 2021

New Share Plan

Buy As You Earn plan launched to 10k UK employees in 2021

Apprenticeships at Howdens

Helping young people get ahead

We’ve got an apprentice programme to be proud of. We currently have 610 apprentices on a range of tailored programmes throughout all areas of the business. We recruited 616 apprentices in 2021, and we were pleased to celebrate the success of our 155 employees who successfully completed apprentice programmes in the year.

Our apprentices are a mixture of new starters, recruited into apprentice positions and training at a foundation level, and existing employees who are taking an apprenticeship route to gain higher level skills and professional qualifications.

We understand the value that apprentices can bring to our business, and we try to offer as many in-house apprenticeship programmes as possible. Where we are not able to use all of our apprenticeship Levy credit we have partnered with EN:Able Futures, passing on surplus Levy credits to them so that they can offer apprenticeships in building and construction trade skills, including kitchen fitting. In this way, we are helping to address the demand gap for skills in the trade and also help to train the next generation of Howdens customers.


Our apprentices

Growing our talent is critical to the continued growth and success of our business and we are proud to support 610 apprentices across Howdens.

Our achievements

A desire to continuously improve is prevalent at Howdens, and this has led to us receiving some of the most prestigious acknowledgements in our field.

Freight Transport Association's Truck Excellence

In 2016, we were one of the first companies to gain the Freight Transport Association's Truck Excellence accreditation. The group, which represents the logistics industries, noted our dedication to operating exemplary large goods vehicles, in the interest of increasing safety for our drivers and other road users.

Payroll Giving Gold Award

In 2019, we received the Payroll Giving Gold Award to commend our efforts in enabling employees to make tax-free donations to charities through their payslip. In 2019 Howdens employees donated over £75,000 through payroll giving.

Logistics Carbon Reduction Scheme award

In 2017 we were proud to receive the Freight Transport Association’s prestigious Logistics Carbon Reduction Scheme award for exceptional efforts in reducing carbon in our operations.

We were recognised for demonstrating a co-operative and inclusive approach to carbon reduction which has included the integration of telematics, comprehensive driver training, and adaption of our fleet with aerodynamic deflectors.

One of The Best Big Companies to Work for


As part of Howdens’ employee engagement activities, we regularly participate in the Best Companies To Work For Survey.

In 2020, we placed 14th in the Best Big Companies to Work For list and received special recognition in the “Giving Something Back” category. This recognises our support in our local communities and the environment.

We were commended for the support we give those who serve as on-call firefighters and emergency medical responders from our factories and warehouses across the UK. The gallant support that these volunteers have given to local Fire and Rescue services has led to many saved lives.

We recently ran the survey again and have retained a two-star accreditation for our outstanding commitment to workforce engagement.

The 2022 results will be confirmed at the end of the year, where we are currently placed in the Top 5 of the national league table based on this year’s survey results.

Best Big Companies
Manufacturing Guild Mark_792x548

Manufacturing Guild Mark

In 2020 we were delighted to be awarded the prestigious Manufacturing Guild Mark from The Furniture Makers’ Company.
The Manufacturing Guild Mark has been the mark of excellence, distinguishing Britain’s top furnishing manufacturers, since 1993. It is awarded to companies that demonstrate high standards across seven assessment criteria: design, product development and function, manufacture, human resources, financial stability, sustainability and sales and marketing.

Careers at Howdens

At Howdens we have a huge variety of teams, all linked together by one common purpose - to offer great service to builders everywhere.

Our teams work closely with each other and are completely interdependent. There’s a role for everyone in every team in the business.

Our 470,000 plus active customers depend on Howdens' quality and reliability. This means that everyone at Howdens is responsible for maintaining our industry-leading reputation.

The values behind this are concrete and simple: we do what we say, and we rely on each other to do exactly that, every single day. It's all about building trust within the company and with our loyal customers and suppliers.

We’re always looking for smart, energetic people who love helping others. You don’t necessarily need experience. What’s important is that your talent and effort are recognised and rewarded by a satisfying career with real opportunities to succeed.

If you’d like to find out more about a career at Howdens please visit our careers web site for more information and to find the right role for you.
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