The Builders Merchants Federation saw the first eight students on its Post Graduate Diploma in Independent Merchant Leadership and Strategy, graduate, three of them with Distinction.
Five of the graduates, Andrew Brooker of T Brooker, Jason Rothwell of Howarth Timber, and Lee Church, Jake Feek and Jamie Pierce from Parker Building Supplies attended Birmingham City University’s Winter Award Ceremony.
The three other graduates were Gary Froggatt of Howarth Timber and Darren MacAskill and Steven Webber both from Elliott Brothers.
BMF MD John Newcomb attended the ceremony with Richard Ellithorne, BMF Membership Services Director and Stewart Pierce, BMF Vice Chair. John Newcomb said: “I am proud and delighted to congratulate the first group to achieve the BMF Post Graduate Diploma. I believe they are all planning to continue their studies at Birmingham City University towards a merchant-specific Masters Degree that has been developed in conjunction with the BMF. This is a fantastic endorsement of the relevance of the BMF’s development programme for the industry.”
For their final Post Graduate Diploma projects, all eight students undertook work that directly benefited their companies.
Steven Webber and Darren MacAskill (who achieved Distinctions), investigated Branch Benchmarking for Elliott Brothers. Their project created a series of balanced measures to assess the quality and performance of a branch beyond the profit it generates. This encompassed customer service quality, stock management and availability, the appearance and cleanliness of the branch and its health and safety record.
Garry Froggatt and Jason Rothwell focused on Digital Marketing at Howarth Timber and Building Supplies, with a project that investigated the company’s existing online trading platform and recommended developments.
For Parker Building Supplies, Jamie Pierce, Lee Church and Jake Feek took a close look at Stock Control and Movement, with a project to create a unified working process system of efficiency across the company that will enable branches to have confidence and control of stock movement.
Andrew Brooker also achieved a Distinction. He undertook solo project on his family firm, Brookers, evaluating options for the future of one of branches, with recommendations to be used as template for future expansion.