HVP visited Pimlico Plumbers to see how its current £1 million expansion is developing, and discover what its future plans and investments are.
Pimlico Plumbers is on track for the expansion of its Lambeth headquarters, improving and developing every area of its business. There has been a total £1 million investment to increase the capacity of the HQ by an extra 35,000 sq ft, and renovate office space for all support services.
Key areas that have, or will be expanded are:
A significant portion of the increase in capacity has come from acquiring archway spaces opposite the main headquarters, with each archway having between 2,500 and 3,000 sq ft in space. An internal crew of 18 people is doing the majority of the work, and this will increase to 30 people by October.
The increase in capacity is taking place alongside a drive to employ more tradespeople, and support staff, as the company has to expand across the board every time a new tradesperson is added to the team.
Karl Plunkett, Public Relations Manager for Pimlico Plumbers, explained: “Everything is to scale. So, every time you take on 10 engineers, you need another customer service person and more resources to support them.”
As well as the increase in the size of the HQ, there is also an effort to expand the business to a larger area in London to support more customers. The company would still focus on domestic, as well as potentially expanding to light commercial.
Charlie Mullins, founder and CEO of Pimlico Plumbers, said: “This expansion is guaranteeing we keep up with the ever-increasing demand for our services. It is enabling us to bring on more jobs, which is keeping our workforce busy to the tune of £5m worth of sales in recent months, and helping secure more of the London market.”
The internal offices have been renovated as well, with every service from the control room, accounts, customer service and even the canteen upgraded. Earlier this year there was a gym added to the HQ for all employees, including a private masseur who comes in three times a week.
As the ground level expansions are underway, there are plans to extend the facility upwards and add another floor to the main building within the next few years as well.
Karl, speaking about the last recession and the challenges that faced the company, said: “We made a conscious decision to stop fighting to survive, and to actually expand and to get bigger.”
In the last few months, Pimlico Plumbers have recruited more staff, bringing the total up to a record 358. Karl believes there is potential to have a workforce three times as big within the next five to 10 years.
An increase in engineers means an increase in the famous Pimlico fleet of vans as well, the vans are being bought faster than the paint shop can work on them. There are now 250 Pimlico Plumbers vans on the road, and the 250th has been painted with a commemorative livery.