The face of FirstPort
Developers, investors and landlords, in for the long-term or planning an exit, all have the constant objective of worry-free asset performance and return on investment.
FirstPort, which manages private residential and senior living properties on behalf of leaseholders, is founded on best-in-class asset management skills and strategic property management, an approach that fits perfectly with Ian Williams’ direct delivery model.
Philip Jones, General Manager of Ian Williams explains more: “The key point from FirstPort’s perspective is that, as far as their leaseholders are concerned, Ian Williams must be the face of FirstPort. After all, we’re the ones carrying out the property improvement and maintenance works, communicating and liaising with tenants and most importantly, it’s our teams who are privileged to work in the properties. Thanks to our customer focused, direct delivery model, Ian Williams is perfectly placed to filter down across our teams, the values and ethos of FirstPort.
“Ian Williams has significant experience of looking after leaseholders, which is important because it’s a highly sensitive market segment. While the end products we deliver – internal and external decoration, carpets and flooring or improving communal spaces by providing Equality Act colour advice and making them safer when it comes to controlling the spread of flames in case of fire – are the same, there are very specific ways in which we must deliver them.
“All of the maintenance work we carry out has to be the product of a competitive tendering process to establish value for money for the leaseholders who ultimately pay the bills. Standard properties consist predominantly of blocks of flats all over the UK, mostly in urban areas and often in up-market locations such as marinas and waterfront developments and for these we liaise closely with the local property managers to establish the correct scope and specification to fit the particular needs of that building. There is no ‘one size fits all’ solution as the schemes have been built by a multitude of developers over a long period of time.
“Adaptability and responsiveness are also key. Many of the leaseholders are at work while our teams are at the properties, so we have to be flexible with communication. Also, as the leaseholders are paying for the work themselves, there can be many more enquiries about standards and specification throughout the job and our teams must be patient and helpful and act as guides along the journey. This is especially true when it comes to working with older people, but we are well trained and practised for the specific requirements of sensitive working within this kind of living environment.
“Ultimately, the two organisations are a great fit on many levels – for example, we both have safety as a top priority and are both safety award winning, most recently, Ian Williams won the prestigious RoSPA President’s Award for the second year running, and earlier this year, FirstPort was awarded five stars in its health and safety audit conducted by the British Safety Council. Both organisations also have the objective of genuine customer delight at their heart and in short, Ian Williams is proud to be the face of FirstPort.”
FirstPort spokesperson: “It’s important that FirstPort’s supply chain shares the same ethics and approach as ourselves to ensure our customers get consistently high levels of performance, service and quality. Working with Ian Williams helps us to achieve just this, helping us to offer a worry-free asset performance across the properties we look after.”