Radleys 50th anniversary: Staff share their highlights

Author: Inez Cornell
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Date: Jan 23, 2017

W6-Bill-and-Iris-Radley

Radleys 50th anniversary celebrations are in full swing this year - how time flies! A lot has changed since the company started and many of the staff have been around long enough to witness the incredible transformation it has gone through. Some even remember the days when email addresses were rare and there was still an office telex machine!

Some of the staff have shared with us the changes they’ve seen, what their highlights have been and what they love about working at Radleys.

W8 Gemma

Gemma Scott

Director of Sales

At Radleys since 2001

What does your job involve?

I’m responsible for UK and international sales, as well as the customer service and technical teams. In essence, this involves a lot of talking, spreadsheets and aeroplanes and means I’m often the face of Radleys.

How has your job changed over the years?

I joined Radleys as a fledgling graduate, armed with a lot of knowledge about monkeys (from my degree in Zoology) and a lot of big ideas. Now, fifteen years later and after a short break for a whistle stop tour of the world I’m still here. Although I now have very little knowledge about monkeys, my head’s filled with all things chemistry and innovation.

What do you love about working at Radleys?

When people ask me what I do, I love explaining that Radleys products help chemists produce items which are used every day like shampoo, toothpaste and even medicine and paint.

The people here are our biggest asset. I love working with so many clever and skilled people, who are willing to learn new things and work together in a productive manner.

We’re constantly evolving, so there’s always a new goal to aspire to, which helps make every day different. I’m incredibly proud of what we’ve achieved and I’m excited about the future.

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Julie Badger

Purchasing Manager

At Radleys since 1990

What does your job involve?

I am responsible for all the purchasing processes, this includes placing and receipting purchase orders and stock control. I am also responsible for the stores department and shipping (both import and export).

How has your job changed over the years?

Over the years my job has become much less manual. When I started, we used written purchase orders and a written card system for stock control - which actually worked very well. We placed purchase orders by phone or fax. Fax machines were a new invention at the time. We even still had a telex. I bet there’s a whole generation out there who don’t even know what that is!

What do you love about working at Radleys?

When you work at Radleys, you feel appreciated because you’re treated like a person and not just a number. You know everyone at the company and you can talk to anyone. The people at Radleys feel like your work family and like all families we have our ups and our downs but things always get sorted in the end.

We also have good relationships with our suppliers - many of whom we’ve worked with for several years and we’ve become very loyal to.

W8 Bev

Beverley Waterhouse

Pricing Co-ordinator & Purchasing Assistant

At Radleys since 1995

What does your job involve?

I manage all our price lists and order all the raw materials and consumables for our workshops. I also assist our purchasing manager and I’m part of the customer service team, so I help them respond to incoming calls.

What are your most memorable moments?

The social events! One of the best we’ve had was when we celebrated completing the ChemScience Catalogue in 2003. We were each picked up at our houses by stretch limo and driven to London for a meal overlooking the Thames. It was a great thank you for all the late nights and weekends we worked to get the catalogue finished.

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Holly Bond

Customer Service

At Radleys since 1997

What does your job involve?

As part of the customer service team, I deal with customer queries and also process orders, raise delivery notes and manage some agent’s orders.

How has your job changed over the years?

I started as an office junior, which meant one of my duties was making tea for everyone in the company - twice a day! I also took dictations for letters from Bill and Mark Radley and carried out other general office duties. Everything used to be manual and some people didn’t even have email addresses. Nowadays a lot of my job is computerised.

What are your most memorable moment?

For my 18th birthday, one of our glassblowers made me a glass key. We’ve also had many memorable Christmas parties but I probably shouldn’t say too much about them!

W8 Paul-R

Paul Robson

Glassblowing Foreman

At Radleys since 2001

What does your job involve?

I’ve been glassblowing for 38 years. As a foreman, I also have other duties and responsibilities besides glassblowing. I advise on glassware quotes and work with the production and technical managers on standard and custom items. This entails estimating times for jobs, and dealing with technical issues.

I organise and order the raw materials we use such as borosilicate glass tubing, natural gas, propane gas and oxygen to fuel our burners. I also deal with quality assurance and health and safety.

What are some of your most memorable moments at Radleys?

I enjoy travelling abroad to attend exhibitions and visit other companies. It’s always good to put a face to a name and I enjoy explaining to our distributors how we do our glass blowing. It gives them some insight into what’s involved in making the items they sell.

However, my most memorable trip was when we went to play in a football tournament hosted by the company Huber, who supply the chiller units which work alongside our reaction systems. We had a team made up of different departments at Radleys and we called ourselves The Radleys Roar team. Although we weren’t very good at the football, we built some great camaraderie with one another and the team at Huber.

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Steve Bendefy

International Territory Manager

At Radleys since 2006

What does your job involve?

I manage the distributor representatives in India, USA, South America, Scandinavia and other parts of Europe. I also train global sales and technical representatives, and give technical presentations to end user synthetic and process chemists.

What are your highlights?

Travelling around Asia has provided me with a wide variety of experiences - not just in business. I’ve had many memorable moments experiencing new cuisines and cultures. Successfully winning orders for multiple systems, seeing the projects through installation and continuing to meet the users for years later is very satisfying.

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Simon Moorhouse

Director of Operations

At Radleys since 2001

What does your job involve?

My job is to control the development, manufacture, delivery and support of the complete product range and the management of the infrastructure and resource needed to do this. Fortunately, I have a great team to help me deliver this.

What are your highlights?

Being involved in the development of some of the great products we now have, like Reactor-Ready and Findenser.

We’ve also had some fairly wild Christmas parties, fun family barbecues and some very funny ‘Carry On’ moments in meetings.

What do you love about working at Radleys?

The best thing about working here is the truly committed team. We're honest and proud of what we do and we’re continually looking to improve. The fact that we genuinely want to do the best we can and that we care about our customers and staff makes the work rewarding.

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