My name is Phil Bevan and I am the Managing Director of Plantech Grounds Maintenance. I have owned the company since 2008 and I am very pleased with the current state of the business. We have an energetic and capable workforce whom I am delighted to oversee. 

This blog entry is intended to provide a bird’s eye view of Plantech as it currently operates and our vision for the near future. 

COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has required businesses across the globe to be adaptable and, to this, Plantech is no exception. Fortunately, the affect on us has been relatively negligible. Apart from a few clients freezing services amidst the uncertainty, we have managed to remain busy throughout. This, however, is not without implementing adjustments to ensure the safety of our staff and clients.

We have been serious in our enforcement of social distancing practices at work. The measures implemented to prevent the spread of COVID-19, beyond those issued by government, are as follows:

– We have two separate ‘sign in’ locations. This divides the staff into two groups in the mornings and afternoons, limiting the size of groups in any one place.

– Hand sanitizer is available in every work vehicle, as well as throughout the office and factory unit.

– Teams of two have been prescribed and designated a vehicle to limit the potential for spread.

– Vehicle interiors are cleaned and disinfected daily.

Staff have been extremely flexible and open minded in adopting these measures. As we do a large amount of work for aged care facilities and elderly residential properties the proper exercise of these measures has been critical.

Going forward, we intend to adhere strictly to the advice of the Government on all matters concerning COVID-19. Currently, that means maintaining the practices we have put in place until the necessity for them expires.

Training

We are determined to make the most of a difficult situation. Despite the obvious obstacles posed by the virus, it has also provided a window of opportunity to bolster the skills of our workforce.  Three of our employees are currently undergoing training commissioned by Plantech. Alison is doing a course in Plant Selection and Establishment, Keaton is completing his Cert IV in Occupational Health and Safety and Mark is undertaking a Paving Skillset course. These are on top of Horticulture and Landscaping courses being completed, privately, by two of our staff members.

Equipment

In an effort to improve the scope of work of each vehicle, and the company as a whole, a number of additions have been made to our collection of machines. Firstly, we have acquired a 52 inch ride on mower. We now have three ride-on mowers of varying sizes and can allocate them to jobs appropriately. This is on top of simply having more ride-on mowers available to complete work where it is necessary.

We have also obtained a 26 inch cylinder mower. This should be ideal for creating the highly sought after cylinder finish on lawns where access or size is limiting. All our vehicles are equipped with a cylinder mower as they produce the most appealing lawns. It is important that each team has the resources to do that.

Going Forward

In the recent months we have been encouraged to take a big picture approach to the business. Our focus, in particular, has been preparedness. Coming out of, hopefully, the worst of COVID-19, I feel we are generally better equipped to handle anything that may present itself. Our workforce is becoming more versatile and broader in its skill set, which gives us added confidence. It has also been refreshing to see how readily our staff are willing to respond to change which, I think, holds us in good stead. 

We are looking to use these improvements to develop certain areas of work, namely the landscaping division. Plantech has traditionally been grounds maintenance orientated (hence the name) but we now feel that we are in a position to shift some of that focus to landscaping. We have completed some residential landscaping recently and the finished products have indicated that this could be a positive direction for us.

Sponsorship and Membership

In 2019 Plantech became a member of the Western Australian Chamber of Commerce. Recently, also, we have become members of the Fremantle Chamber of Commerce. These services provide practical advice on a range of workplace matters and have proved useful during the COVID-19 pandemic.

I am proud to announce that Plantech will sponsor the South Fremantle Football Club for season 2020. I have been a lifelong supporter of the Bulldogs and am pleased to be able to support them in a new way.

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