Springfield tops 500 staff ‘landmark’

The staff landmark was celebrated
The staff landmark was celebrated
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Moray-based housebuilder Springfield Properties has crossed a “landmark threshold” with its headcount rising above 500, more than doubling in the past seven years.

Chief executive Innes Smith described it as a “milestone” moment for the firm, which recently forecast that its annual profits would be 5 to 10 per cent above market expectations.

The group, which listed on London’s Alternative Investment Market (Aim) last October, said it continued to recruit across Scotland on the back of its expansion plans. On top of the current 28 active developments, with several more in the pipeline, the firm has been progressing the delivery of new “village” projects across the country.

On top of its 518 employees and more than 1,500 subcontractors, Springfield currently supports 113 staff in further education, training and apprenticeships. This comprises 48 construction apprentices, 13 technical apprentices, 35 employees in modern apprenticeships and 17 employees undertaking higher education through training centres that work with Skills Development Scotland.

Smith said: “Reaching 500 employees is a key milestone for the company. Springfield is poised to play a significant part in the delivery of the many new private and affordable homes needed across Scotland.

“The company has grown over the years and growth means we will take on more employees right across the business from accounts trainees to experienced tradesmen.”

Since the start of the year, the firm has recruited nine office-based employees in Larbert and Elgin in positions ranging from IT systems administrator to commercial manager.

Innes added: “All our employees are encouraged to take new opportunities to help them grow.

“Apprenticeships are helping to address the current ­construction industry skills shortage. Our apprentices all work on building our houses every day – they all have the opportunity of a promising future with Springfield as they become skilled in their trade.”

In its maiden results as a public company in February, the firm announced underlying interim pre-tax profits up just under 20 per cent at £3.1 million from £2.6m in the same period the previous year.

Revenues lifted 10.5 per cent to £54.8m in the six months to end-November, with an interim dividend of 1p being declared.

Private housing sales rose 6 per cent to £43m, with an average selling price of £234,000, up from £208,000 in the first half of the previous year.

Sales in affordable housing, which Springfield often builds in partnership with councils and housing associations, jumped 40 per cent to £11.7m from £8.4m last time, with an average selling price down £1,000 at £122,000.

The firm said there had also been significant progress on its “village” sites. This included “strong sales” of £17.2m at its site at Dykes of Gray, ­Dundee.

Construction has also begun at Bertha Park, Perth, and planning approval had been received for 870 homes in Elgin.

In all, it is to build five village housing developments in north and central Scotland in a 15 to 20-year project.