Breedon is a leading construction materials group in Great Britain and Ireland. It operates two cement plants and an extensive network of quarries, asphalt plants and ready-mixed concrete plants, together with slate production, concrete and clay products manufacturing, contract surfacing and highway maintenance operations.
The Group employs over 3,500 people and has around a billion tonnes of mineral reserves and resources. Breedon has established a strong reputation for innovation within its industry and has continually developed market-leading products which help developers, housebuilders, architects and specifiers to save time and money and reduce their environmental impact.
Breedon is a longstanding Quiet Storm client, and we have worked on several projects for the construction materials giant over the years. The construction sector was one of the first to be affected when the Government implemented lockdown restrictions in March to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. When the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme was launched the following month, Breedon placed the majority of its staff on furlough as its sites were temporarily shut down.
Quiet Storm was tasked with quickly building and launching an online communications portal that the company could use to keep its furloughed staff up to date with the latest news and information. The portal was hosted on a private, password protected URL with multifactor authentication and all affected staff were emailed with an invitation to log in. Its content management system, meanwhile, gave Breedon’s administrators full visibility over which staff had registered and when, so that they could send follow-up emails to those who had not registered to encourage them to do so.
At launch, more than 1,500 employees signed up to the portal, which features a business bulletin board and a host of other tools to keep the team engaged. Although the standalone platform was created specifically for engaging with furloughed staff, it has been designed in such a way that it can be easily adapted for other purposes beyond COVID-19.
Steve Jacobs, Breedon Group’s Head of Communications & Marketing, said:
“When lockdown was announced, many of our sites were shut down with little notice and we had no way of mass communicating with our affected colleagues, many of whom did not have company email accounts.
“It was a challenging time and there was a lot of uncertainty about what the future might hold, so we needed a quick and effective solution which enabled us to keep our colleagues up to date with events, offer them advice on how to stay healthy and provide them with guidance on how to get safely back to work as the restrictions were lifted. We wanted to ensure that, even though they were temporarily away from the business, they still felt part of the Breedon family.
“We’ve worked with Quiet Storm for many years, so they were our first port of call for the project. They delivered an excellent solution which was deployed quickly and efficiently and which we still use today as an additional means of keeping in touch with our teams around the Group.”