Couple wins big for dedication to worker career development
AFTER a close miss for Small Employer of the year in 2018, South Burnett's Astill's Electrical Services have taken out Medium Employer of the year at this year's Queensland Training Awards.
Owners Amanda and Mick Astill both agreed it was thanks to their loss last year that they came out on top.
"It was really good for us doing it last year," Mrs Astill said.
"Through the interview process we learnt a lot. There were a lot of takeaways that we were then able to implement this year."
The Small Employer of the year is a category for up to 19 team members, and the Medium Employer of the year is for up to 199 team members.
"So it was quite the jump and we certainly had a lot more competition this time around," Mr Astill said.
"We currently have 30 team members.
"It was just a massive competition. The companies we were up against were extraordinary. There were a lot of big industrial ones too."
Mr Astill said the couple attended the awards ceremony with no idea they would win.
"We were completely blind sighted and had no speech prepared," he said.
"Luckily Amanda took one for the team and got up there. It was great and she killed it.
"Then once we got back we had a big team meeting and explained to everyone what this award was about and why we won it."
Mrs Astill said the award was essentially because of their efforts to best train and prepare their employees.
"So we won this based on what we do to try and best help our team members. To us it's important to focus on future development," she said.
"It's important for us to remember and remind them that this is more than a job. It's their career.
"So we need to always be focusing on their personal and professional development."
The couple said they do this through having regular training days.
"We like to have lots of days where we get everyone together for training to maintain and develop their skills," Mrs Astill said.
"We also send a lot of our trades man away and really focus on up-skilling," Mr Astill said.
This year the couple have implemented brand new individual training plans.
"This way everyone kind of has their own pathway of where they're heading to," Mrs Astill said.
"It's important because we can look at where they're at now and then where they want to be and how to get them there.
"The team has loved it and loved having an input.
"I think it's also really nice and reassuring to be in a job where you know your future is there and that we care about their futures."