Craig Hunter, Director Of Operations for AccuGrit

Meet Craig Hunter, AccuGrit’s New Director of Operations

Business News | 09 April

AccuGrit, the UK’s leading provider of winter maintenance services, is delighted to introduce Craig Hunter as our new Director of Operations. With over 20 years of experience in Grounds Maintenance, Craig brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to AccuGrit’s already impressive team.

In his new role, Craig will oversee the daily operations of AccuGrit, ensuring the smooth and efficient delivery of services to clients across the country. He will focus on maintaining the high standards AccuGrit is known for while implementing innovative strategies to improve customer satisfaction further.

Craig’s appointment is a testament to AccuGrit’s commitment to providing exceptional service and their dedication to being at the forefront of the industry. With his extensive background and AccuGrit’s expertise, clients can expect nothing but the best in winter maintenance, delivered with professionalism, reliability, and a focus on sustainable practices.

“Welcome aboard, Craig! We’re thrilled to have you join the AccuGrit family. To kick things off, could you share a bit about your background and what drew you to the world of Winter Maintenance?”

Thank you very much for the warm introduction to my new role.  After three weeks, all at Accugrit have welcomed me into a superb business culture. In terms of background, I joined the Grounds Maintenance (GM) industry after leaving University, so for 18 years, 20 if you include seasonal breaks while at University. Within that time, I have been involved with most aspects of the business, developing through the management team to become Regional Operations Director for North and Scotland, then moving for four years to Key Account Director for some of our larger clients, having roles in commercials, contract negotiations and big retentions and wins through interaction with the bid team. 

Winter maintenance was always a challenging time of the year for GM businesses. We had fewer employees willing to give up and pause their lives over Xmas, and as a GM business, our focus was investment in front-line GM equipment and delivery on KPIs across the summer and winter. 

I could see that many GM/FM companies would like a fully dedicated, reliable, and trustworthy partner so knowing Accugrit and the majority of the team I was keen to support and help develop growth for the business.  Not just in terms of revenue but also client sectors and some robust commercial partnerships.  Taking the worry and liability away from our partners

“As our new Director of Operations, you’ll be instrumental in shaping AccuGrit’s future. What excites you most about leading our operations team, especially in the context of the unique challenges presented by winter weather?”

What particularly excites me is that I have a unique opportunity to start with a relatively clean slate. We currently have our core and critical personnel in operations. However, I thoroughly enjoy being part of a team where we look after each other, help each other and continuously strive for better performance and delight our clients.

I realise the demands winter can put on a business and people personally, and I see it as my job to protect both. Our commercial performance, our staff’s happiness and ensuring we do what it ‘says on the tin’. I want to improve our IGLU system and create some hubs to support our operations where we felt a stern test last winter.  Titles aside, we are one team, and any decision taken as we grow will be taken by us all. We need to ensure the culture remains positive, and one poor decision can impact that, so I’m a big believer in full cooperation with the team.

“AccuGrit has been pioneering innovative solutions in ice and snow removal. How do you plan to build on our successes and further elevate our service offerings under your leadership?”

Firstly, it is critical to say that our investment, planning, and foresight are for winterisation; that’s our specialism, and we will ensure we don’t stray from that fact. However, in the quieter months, we can offer other services for existing clients; it would be a huge shame to waste all my experience in the GM world and all the work this entails [treeworks, fencing, pressure washing, grit bin maintenance and so on]. 

Many of our clients look for a trusted partner they know can deliver; by helping clients in need, we only further cement the partnership between us. In recent years, it’s become apparent that clients are looking for two main things from a service partner: they want the sites safe at all times, but they also need a solid ‘Proof of Delivery’, and I intend as one of my first tasks to ensure IGLU delivers the portal clients want. The subsequent reports fully meet the standards we promised. I no longer want the POD system to be a work in progress; it’s an innovative, fully tracked solution that provides the most outstanding mitigation defence should an accident occur.

“In your opinion, what sets AccuGrit apart from other Winter Maintenance companies in the UK? How do you envision amplifying these strengths to ensure continued growth and client satisfaction?”

This one is quite simple; we are the largest fully dedicated company in the UK that focuses on winter services alone. This is a fantastic USP. Our profits are reinvested into innovation, our people, and new kits instead of continuous repairs, which hands down makes us the market leader in the UK. 

Our focus is in one place, and I intend that to remain. No one in the team is frightened to pick up the phone sometimes; that’s all it takes to de-escalate a situation. We might not have the answer immediately, but a dynamic approach to our customers is a strength I will work tirelessly to amplify.  Plus, enhanced communication shows a client you genuinely care.

“Communication and collaboration are key in any successful team. How do you plan to foster a culture of teamwork and excellence within the operations department, and how do you see this positively impacting our clients’ experiences?”

Communication and collaboration are two traits I believe I bring to the business in abundance. No one person within our team is more important than the company, nor do I feel I am more important than any of the operational departments. 

We are quite simply as one. Teamwork is the only way I know how to work; I have the opportunity to build and develop a team with the strength and resilience needed for the long hours and many calls and challenges winter brings.  We understand client nervousness around this time, and we need to be prepared for every eventuality. If we do that and stay close to our clients and support them as needed, I feel the experience with Accugrit will be a true partnership.

If you would like to get into touch with Craig directly, please email: [email protected] or contact us here.