Product quality and performance

Customer complaints around product quality rose during the year. As a result we have introduced a programme of further training and development for our operational and sales office staff, along with investment in new plant and machinery, to avoid issues arising from plant failures, batching errors or product specifications. 

A new quality control system has been introduced into the cement business line which will allow greater insight into the cause of complaints and ensure corrective action is taken. We have made further improvements to our order and despatch systems to ensure customers receive the right products at the right time and are invoiced correctly.

We have a national UKAS-accredited testing laboratory at Chipping Sodbury which delivers accurate and consistent analysis of concrete, aggregates and asphalt and also provides a commercial service for external customers. The lab passed a significant milestone during the year, crushing its one-millionth concrete cube. The national facility has been strength-testing an average of 1,700 cubes a week since it was established in May 2005. 

We continue to invest in development of new products, either working with external partners or HeidelbergCement’s global research and development department.