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Corobrik awards exceptional employee performance at annual Conference

Consistent teamwork by employees dedicated to selling a quality product to satisfied customers. This was revealed as the winning formula at this year's Corobrik Conference where a number of worthy candidates were rewarded for their hard work. 

The Western Cape walked away with an impressive four awards Zonke Mapundu was named Sales Representative of the Year; Werner Oelofse received Specifier Representative of the Year; Nickie Janse van Vuuren was runner-up for Area Sales Manager/Centre Manager of the Year and Phesantekraal Centre in Durbanville was awarded Corobrik Centre of the Year. 

Christie van Niekerk, Manager for Corobrik: Western Cape, said teamwork as well as maintaining good business relations, had resulted in growth despite difficult trading conditions. 

 A committed team working well together certainly helped make the delivery on our service promise very consistent, explained Van Niekerk, adding that a number of government projects had also contributed to the region's success. 
There were a number of schools, hospitals and infrastructure projects which came off during the year and which the team managed to get specified in Corobrik product. I put this down to the positive relationship we have with the Department of Public Works.

Sales' Manager of the Year, Steve Behrens, also attributed the Eastern Cape region's success to a strong and dedicated team with a service ethic to match. 

The Corobrik brand has a great reputation nationwide but competition in the Eastern Cape is high as there are several clay and concrete manufacturers right on our doorstep, said Behrens. This is where customer satisfaction, doing what you say you are going to do, becomes a key element of the value proposition.

His team was strengthened by the transfer of Centre Manager, Adri Oliphant, from the Empangeni to Port Elizabeth Centre. Under her guidance, the centre secured the largest clay paving job in the area, the Baywest Mall. 

Behrens said the East London Centre had also managed to attain a high level of success in its 13 years, once again underpinned by dedicated customer service. 

School and hospital infrastructure is still severely lacking in the Eastern Cape region, aggravated by preference given to Innovative Building Technologies (IBTs) which have fallen short in terms of speed of delivery and quality. 

Behrens said that the shortcomings in IBTs for delivering sustainable social infrastructure comparable to brick had been exposed and his team had been focusing on converting new school projects to clay masonry with its proven way superior in quality, durability and thermal efficiency. 

According to Centre Manager of the Year, Sadeck Rahim of the South Coast Centre which won the runner-up award the South Coast region also has a number of industry competitors yet has managed to continue its upward trend. 
It can be a challenging job but, at the end of the day world-class products at fair prices do much of the talking. We set about to complement that with follow up on all deliveries to make sure the customers are completely satisfied.

Rahim said the team had been involved in a number of projects, including the paving of Kokstad's pathways, several residential projects as well as government initiatives. 

It's been a good mix of government and residential work, he explained. 
This positive growth extends inland to Gauteng's five factories where Lawley factory manager, Andreas Ntseki, received Factory Manager of the Year while Heinrich von Wielligh of Driefontein factory took runner-up position. 

David Matlou, Corobrik's Manufacturing Director, said the high-performance of the factories could be attributed, in part, to a number of quality and environmental management systems pervasive in the Corobrik structures. 

Corobrik is on track for all 15 factories countrywide to be compliant in ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and OSHA 18001 by June 2016, explained Matlou. The attainment of this goal will sure help entrench the sustainability of the Corobrik brand in an increasingly discerning market.

Currently, all five Gauteng factories have ISO 9001 quality management system certification, as well as the stringent ISO 14001 which is an environmental management system. 

Further to this, both the Lawley and Driefontein factories are running two registered Clean Development Mechanism projects, having moved from coal to natural gas firing. Lawley factory has also been granted Certified Emission Reductions which can be sold or used to offset carbon tax.

In line with Corobrik's philosophy of creating an environment of zero harm in all operations, the international occupational health and safety management system, OSHAS 18001, is being introduced. Our Corobrik Avoca factory was the first to achieve certification in all three systems OSHAS 18001, ISO 9001 and ISO 14001.

Manufacturing operations at the inland factories have also been given a substantial financial boost with R50 million injected to cover productivity improvement projects and to recapitalise existing plants. An additional R25 million will be used to introduce robotics to Lawley factory, allowing improved operational flexibility that will assist during power outages. A further R3 million has been allocated for the purchase of a generator at Driefontein, also for assistance during load shedding. 

Commenting on Corobrik's performance this past year, Dirk Meyer, Corobrik's Managing Director, said there had been significant growth in the various regions, which is testament to the efforts of the company's high-calibre employees. 

They are committed to our customers and genuinely believe in the quality product they are selling and the value they bring to built environments, said Meyer. These awards serve to validate the team's commitment to the company's objectives and we look forward to another successful year.

Pictured from left to right are all this year's Corobrik winners.
Dirk Meyer, Corobrik Managing Director, Sadeck Rahim the who received the award Corobrik Centre/Area Sales manager  of the year plus second runner-up award for the Corobrik South Coast Centre, Steve Behrens Sales manager,  Allistair Cloete for Corobrik Phesantekraal Centre,  Zonke Mapundu Sales Representative of the year, Werner Oelofse, Specifier Representative of the Year, Esther Fouche, first runner-up Centre/Area Sales manager, Andreas Ntseki Factory Manager of the year, Heindrich von Wielligh, runner up Factory Manager of the year and Peter du Trevou, Corobrik Chairman.