GCA members see standards and profitability improve
The Garden Centre Association in the UK has reported members are reporting higher standards and profitability thanks to annual inspections
19 August 2015
The Garden Centre Association (GCA) has revealed there were record numbers of members receiving highly commended awards and awards of merit this year after its annual inspections and that these inspections have helped drive standards and profitability for those involved.
Following inspections and evaluation 63 garden centres received a highly commended title and 150 received awards of merit. In order to receive an award of merit a garden centre must reach 80% or above in any given category in the inspections.
On the awards and improved standards across the garden centres inspected Iain Wylie, GCA Chief Executive, said: “We are absolutely thrilled to see a record number of our members receiving the Highly Commended award as a result of their excellent performance in our annual inspections.”
For members of GCA the annual inspections are proving very beneficial in improving standards for the business year round. Wylie explains “As they don’t know when the inspections will be held it means they are always ‘on their toes’ in order to make sure everything is running to the highest level at all times. This ensures that customer service and retail standards are always of a high quality throughout the important spring trading period.”
He added “If garden centres are scoring 75% or above, as well as increased standards, members will also see increased turnover and profitability, which is a real benefit of being part of the GCA. They can also benefit by using the awards for marketing their centres – in advertising, publicity, social media and on their websites – and this helps generate greater awareness and additional footfall.”
The GCA represents nearly 200 garden centres across the UK. Through sharing information and its inspection programme the GCA aims helps members achieve high standards in customer service, plant quality and reliability.