Flight Club Reaches New Heights
Introduction/overview Flight Club and its cleaning and hygiene partner Sybron, celebrated their first year of partnership in March 2023. As Flight Club’s parent company, Red Engine, renews its contract with Sybron, significant benefits have been identified from their collaboration including 15% cost savings, zero stress, and 100% confidence!
The first contract which was signed in March 2022 was fully mobilised in under four weeks. After the three month ‘honeymoon period’, there was no dip in the levels of service from Sybron, something which can be prevalent in many new supplier relationships. Indeed, both the purchasing manager and venue managers of Flight Club, are delighted that all it takes is just one call or email to Sybron and any issue is resolved swiftly and efficiently.
The challenge Flight Club opened the oche at its first social darts venue in Shoreditch in 2015 with its focus on bringing joy, fun and quality time to its patrons. Today, Flight Club has grown to 13 venues across the UK, with two more planned by 2023 year-end.
When David Piazzani joined Red Engine as Purchasing Manager in October 2021, it quickly became apparent that one of his first tasks was to review the supply of consumables for cleaning and hygiene at the Flight Club sites.
“The then supplier of all the cleaning, hygiene and ancillary products caused me and our Flight Club managers a lot of stress and anxiety every day,” explains David. “With no after-sales service and a poor response to issues and problems, we started to look for a company we could develop a real partnership with. We knew that there must be a better supplier out there with more sustainable solutions, plus the attention to detail, pro-active approach and willingness to be a real business partner to us.”
The solution When David met Sybron he knew immediately that they were the right partner and in March 2022 both companies began a relationship that still, one year on, astonishes the Flight Club team with its level of service and proactive approach to every day needs.
Hygiene Service Partner, Sybron, provides products such as cleaning and disinfectants, hand towels and toilet paper, as well as janitorial supplies including sponges, mops and brooms to all the Flight Club venues.
However, it is the Sybron ethos of differentiation through a seamless service that has delivered the bullseye for Flight Club. “Being a buyer can sometimes be very frustrating because everyone offers you the same thing over and over again,” explains David. “Sybron take a completely different approach.”
The Sybron approach • Regular communication with an open and honest dialogue. • Sybron deals directly with venue managers, ‘I don’t have to be the middle-man’ says David. • Problems and issues are dealt with swiftly and efficiently. Cases in point!
In 2022 the Bloomsbury Flight Club in central London had a random council and risk assessment. The manager immediately emailed Sybron, who replied within 30 minutes and provided all the additional information requested by the inspector.
o In December 2022 the Bloomsbury Flight Club site had all its sanitary bins unexpectedly removed by the previous contractor, leaving no facilities for that day. Within a few hours of being alerted to the problem Sybron had delivered, set up and installed bins ready for use, so there was no disruption of service.
• Sybron has a pro-active approach to managing our account. o The team is consistently taking initiative and provides alternatives if there is a spike in price or a supply issue.
o Sybron finds the best product, explains why it is better and what the environmental benefit is – they don’t just provide a catalogue and ask you to choose.
o The Sybron approach is to engage with staff to plan and avoid problems before they happen.
o They do not wait for busy managers to call them with urgent supply issues. “Usually, Sybron has presented us with the solution before the problem arises,” explains David. “That’s because Sybron is totally aligned and integrated with our business. This gives me and the Flight Club team the confidence that someone is thinking on our behalf. “Having a partner that understands the nature of our business means that I don’t have to repeat or re-explain anything. We discuss it once and it is done.”
The results As a result of its partnership with Sybron Flight Club bagged a cost saving of 15% across all its sites.
But as David says: “We have saved a lot of money, but to me the cost is secondary to the service. A good price is pointless without the service. Sybron delivers zero stress and the fact that I have 100% confidence is equally valuable.”
“When I find a partner like Sybron, it makes my life easy. Now they are completely symbiotic with us in terms of growth and are completely integrated into our operations for the opening of a new venue. I am not even a part of it anymore, it just happens automatically. I don’t have to be the middle-man as with many suppliers. It is a dream partnership.”
Our customers are our partners “Of course, service is a big part of our business,” explains Brad, director of operations at Sybron. “We are completely focused on both solving any problems promptly, but also on working to make sure there are no glitches or setbacks in the first place.
“That has always been our take on business. We see every contract as a joint partnership where we help both businesses move forward and grow. That does not happen by being reactive, so we differentiate ourselves by a wholly proactive and integrated approach.”
“It is thanks to our team that we have created the synergy with Flight Club, particularly our colleagues in the office and our drivers. Our ethos resonates across the whole company – our customers are our partners, and they have a name rather than a number.”
Sustainable growth Flight Club has doubled its estate for venues in over three years and by the end of 2023 will have 15 locations, including the first site to open in Scotland.
“With such massive growth, some things can get a bit lost. The partnership with Sybron has enabled us to meet our environmental goals to switch to eco cleaning products,” explains David.
“Moving such a big ship over to using solely sustainable products is not something that can happen overnight. However, thanks to its proactive attitude and breadth of product range, Sybron is working with us to reach our aim – to move to all eco-cleaning and hygiene solutions by the end of 2023.”
Forward together “WE SEE THIS PARTNERSHIP AS A JOINT VENTURE. LONG TERM, WE WOULD LIKE TO CONSOLIDATE MORE AND CREATE MORE FLUIDITY WITH SYBRON THAT WILL ALLOW US TO GROW. THEIR SEAMLESS SERVICE GIVES US THE PLATFORM TO ACHIEVE THIS. ALL OUR TEAMS HAVE TOTAL CONFIDENCE IN SYBRON.”
“For me, it is something I don’t even think about anymore,” concludes David. “As a Purchasing Manager, Sybron is at the back of my mind, which is the best place to be if you are a supplier.” “Looking ahead, maintaining a top-class service gets harder as you grow, so more efficiencies are required,” adds Brad. “Our business has a strict growth strategy to ensure we maintain continuity of supply. We continually aim not just to be a box-mover, but to maintain a seamless service and be a real partner to our customers.”