My Twitter Feed

January 20, 2018

Latest:

New body launched to support Business Improvement Districts -

Friday, January 19, 2018

Cardiff announces plans for £180m investment project -

Friday, January 19, 2018

Banks swoop in to aid workers after Carillion shutdown -

Friday, January 19, 2018

idverde adopts chemical-free weed control solution -

Friday, January 19, 2018

HortAid 2018 gets under way at the Party for Perennial -

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Shortlists announced for the Pro Landscaper Business Awards -

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Hillier set to inspire at RHS Chelsea 2018 -

Thursday, January 18, 2018

APL announces spring seminar Faking It -

Thursday, January 18, 2018

2018 RHS Chelsea Flower Show champions the immense power of plants -

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Young Gardeners of the Year 2018 competition launches -

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Two weeks left to share views on plans for Bristol’s parks -

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Carillion’s liquidation and its effect on the landscaping industry -

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Perennial offers support following Carillion collapse -

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Brighton & Hove City Council produces plan to protect Stanmer Park’s woods -

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Liverpool sets out 15-year plan for growth -

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Gristwood and Toms champions international accreditation programme -

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Green-tree launches bespoke soil for Rain Gardens -

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Make your voice heard – Pro Landscaper digital survey -

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Landscaping companies announced for APL Avenue at BBC Gardeners’ World Live 2018 -

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Butter Wakefield to design Gaze Burvill garden at RHS Chelsea 2018 -

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Mitie’s Tim Howell discusses how technological advances benefit the industry

Landscaping hasn’t changed significantly since the days of Capability Brown, inasmuch as it’s still people using tools and materials to build, manage and develop the green environment. Our industry is not usually considered hi-tech or highly innovative and, while the horses and scythes of the 18th century have been replaced by tractors and mowers, it’s not apparent that
the industry has embraced high levels of technology – it’s still people using tools and equipment, right?

Perhaps that’s the view that many people have of us – the cloth-capped gardener pushing a rickety mower – but if you look under the skin of what we do, there is indeed a very high level of innovation. The machinery we use has become cleaner, more efficient, safer and more reliable. A modern commercial mower now has many of the features you’d expect to find on a high-spec car.
The chemicals and pesticides we use are safer and more effective than they have ever been before and, as technology improves, we can see even greater advances ahead.

However, where we’ve seen the biggest leaps forward in recent years is not in equipment or materials, but in the way we communicate. Like it or not, we live in a world that relies on instant data and statistics, creating information that allows us to make decisions, focus our investment, fine-tune our thought processes and evolve the way we do things. We shouldn’t be surprised if our customers also want to know what we as an industry are up to, so that they too can make strategic decisions on how they manage and develop their properties, and how they make their work spaces more attractive and healthy for employees.

At Mitie, we recognise our customer’s desire for live management information early, and we’ve set out to have market-leading technology throughout the business. We give our customers live and transparent data on what we’re doing for them, and what we plan to do for them. There’s obviously a considerable cost to this and we’ve invested heavily, not only in designing and maintaining the software, but also in providing suitable hardware to all of our people. This is no mean feat for a business that employs nearly 900 frontline gardeners.

The benefits? Our customers can see what we’re up to and can better understand the real costs involved in delivering our services. Our managers have all the data at their fingertips, which allows them to make immediate decisions to improve efficiency or quality. And, crucially, we’re safer; satellite tracking means that we know where everyone is and can make sure that they stay safe.

While we might have expected our people to be resistant to technology, particularly when it pinpoints what they’re up to, nothing could be further from the truth. People embrace new technology, and it has changed the way we all feel about what we do. It’s brought us closer together, both as a business and with our customers. At Mitie, we are gatekeepers for the gigabytes of data generated every second across the thousands of sites we manage. We’re in a unique position to see how employees and visitors interact in the workspace, and through data analytics we provide insight that can transform ordinary workplaces into brilliant, inspirational ones.

The future is now. The data revolution is happening. Our workforce and customers are demanding, tech-savvy and data hungry. Don’t avoid it, join in – drive innovative change in the way our industry presents itself, and we’ll increase its value and worth. That will benefit all of us.

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