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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.

10,000

Employees in 2019

480

Apprentices in 2019

1,600

Trained Kitchen Designers in 2019

Apprenticeships at Howdens

Helping young people get ahead

Over 480 apprentices were part of our apprenticeship programme in 2019.

At Howdens we’re proud of our apprenticeship programme; it is the ideal way to develop and prepare people for a productive and stable career. It helps us to find new staff who understand and can help us maintain our special way of working, whilst contributing to the growth of our business.

From the first day’s training and during integration into the workplace, we want our apprentices to find a warm welcome from colleagues who have genuine passion about the department they work in. That’s the best way to make apprentices feel valued, secure and in a position to make long-term commitment to Howdens.

We work in partnership with carefully selected Apprenticeship Training Providers which enables us to provide the highest possible standard of training. An apprenticeship is an excellent foundation for a career with Howdens, and many of our apprentices have gone on to achieve success in specialist roles.
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Our apprentices

Growing our talent is critical to the continued growth and success of our business and we are proud to support 480 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 Sunday Times Best Big Companies

As part of Howdens’ employee engagement activities, we have entered ‘The Sunday Times Best Big Companies to Work For’ every three years since 2010. This involves a comprehensive survey, sent in confidence by an independent third party, to every Howdens’ employee. The results of these surveys have led to us being in the top 25 Best Big Companies to work for on every occasion since 2010.

At the awards ceremony held on 20 February 2020, Howdens were once again recognised in the top 25 list and were awarded 14th place for the survey results carried out in 2019. As part of the awards ceremony, Howdens also received a two-star Best Companies accreditation, which recognised our outstanding commitment to workforce engagement.

At the 2020 awards, special recognition was given to Howdens in the “Giving Something Back” category for the support we do for our local communities and the environment. In particular, we were commended for the support we give those who serve as on-call firefighters and emergency medical responders from our factory and warehouse sites in Runcorn, Cheshire, Howden, East Yorkshire and Raunds, Northamptonshire. The gallant support that these volunteers have given to local Fire and Rescue services has led to many saved lives.
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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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