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Issues uncovered as ITV’s Undercover Big Boss goes behind-the-scenes at removals firm

This week’s Undercover Big Boss, shown on ITV, focussed on a well-known UK removals company. The programme saw its managing director go incognito to find out why his firm was struggling to recruit younger employees.

Simon Hood, director of another leading removals specialist, John Mason International, says the programme gave some interesting insights on how  other moving companies operate.

“The programme was not about John Mason International, but it was interesting to see behind the scenes of a fellow removals operator and learn of issues experienced by some of its workers,” he says.

“Whilst it showed quite clearly that the company concerned is blessed with some excellent colleagues, not everything was rosy about their pay and conditions.

“The MD demonstrated great leadership skills by listening to the concerns of his workforce, and acting upon them. But, frankly, some of these should never have been a problem in the first place.

“Seeing porters having to sleep in the back of a dirty removals lorry on old blankets used to wrap furniture when carrying out overnight work was very sad. This may have been commonplace within the industry decades ago but in this day and age, for me, it is completely unacceptable.

“That’s why, at John Mason International, we factor expenses for overnight accommodation into our logistics quotes. These are reviewed annually and increased,  based on the latest market rates from accommodation providers.

“Our employees are the company’s most important assets – and keeping hold of them is paramount. Fortunately, we have a relatively low turnover of staff, and I believe the conditions we offer play a big part in this.

“I want my colleagues to be proud of John Mason International and, in turn, provide our customers with the excellent level of service that our brand reputation exudes.

“This week’s programme also picked up on a less than perfect East London depot, where a number of the featured company’s drivers and porters were working out of a shipping container – apparently with no running hot water or permanent toilet. This was causing disquiet among the team working there, who couldn’t manoeuvre their vehicles effectively – or even keep them clean. It became quite clear the MD was unaware of this and was visibly taken aback. Needless to say the issue was quickly rectified.

“Pay, that didn’t reflect the enormous efforts of removals teams, was also addressed.

“As a director at John Mason International, I think it’s important to invite feedback from our team – both positive and negative. I want our customers to know that we are a good employer and partner to our subcontractors – and they can only know this if we have a happy workforce.

“I am pleased to report that our depots are fit for purpose, and our crews are paid well over the minimum wage. My colleagues, partners and customers all have easy access to our management team, should they have any concerns or requests.

“Removals teams work incredibly hard, and they deserve to be fully rewarded for their efforts. At John Mason International, I am confident that we are doing just that.

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As one of the leading providers of overseas removals services on a national and international scale, we pride ourselves on providing a professional and friendly service from ourhighly trained and competent team. We have been recognised as one of the leading international moving companies by the networks below and we are, therefore, proud of our credentials and the quality standard they represent.

Some of our Customer Reviews

If anyone asks me to recommend a removal company, you and your team are absolutely first on my list. You guys have been super helpful plus, all the way from initial contact to the end and so approachable.

Surrey, UK to Sydney, Australia - December 2020

We have been so impressed with the care taken and the quality of packing, and also realise perhaps how lucky we have been to instigate the move when we did, and then to ask John Mason to do it for us.

D.P. Leeds, UK to Perth, Australia – November 2020

Absolutely one of the best movers I have worked with. Pleasant helpful admin staff and the delivery drivers were absolute angels sorting and moving the boxes where I asked them to. Arrived exactly when they said it would.

Selby, UK to Sydney, Australia - September 2020

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