From state winners to national finalists – locally based agricultural and machinery dealership Wickham Flower is rising up the ranks!
Back in September, the branch were announced winners of the South Australian Medium Employer of the Year. The group were then short-listed for the Australian Training Awards and now, are a top three finalist for the upcoming Australian Medium Employer of the Year.
Wickham Flower Bordertown director Leigh Muster and dealer principal Vaughn Colwill will attend the prestigious event held in Sydney on November 14 and 15.
Mr Muster told the Chronicle there would be a screening and presentation process before winners were announced.
“There’s a day of meeting with the other award winners from different states and then we go through a training session on vocational training,” he said.
“We then do a presentation on why we should win, highlighting our training achievements, business achievements and excellence in training.
“Last week our branch had a site visit from one of the national judges who verified what we do and looks to see if everything in our application is true.”
Wickham Flower currently employees 95 staff members for the five branches located in the regional south-east district of South Australia.
“We have two branches in Bordertown, two in Naracoorte, one in Keith and a service centre in Mount Gambier,” Mr Muster said.
He said there would also be plenty of opportunity for more employment places in the present to near future.
“We are definitely looking for more technicians and mechanics, we’ve also been advertising for sales positions and also an administration role at the moment,” Mr Muster said.
“The Tatiara has a pretty low unemployment rate but we are all about hiring local people and also attracting others from outside the area.
“We want to be an employer of choice – people see us as being attractive and put us at the top of the list when looking for a job.”
Mr Muster said winning the award would be a great opportunity to be recognised for all the training done throughout the branch.
“It’s great to be recognised and to show us and our staff that we are on the right track by implementing our training programs,” he said.
“We won’t always have people with the skills applying for jobs, but we look for people that fit the values of our company and then train them for the career they want.”
The Australian Medium Employer of the Year will receives $5000 to be pooled back into training and career development.
“We are really pleased to have been made a finalist nationally and hopefully we can win,” Mr Muster said.
“It would be break to bring it home to a regional South Australian company.”