“It is Going to be the Future”


Nick Holt, Director at WJ Group.

Nick Holt is on the board of directors for WJ Group. Once a liner himself, Nick has over 20 years of experience, including management of the installation of the ‘games lanes’ for the 2012 Olympics.


Could you tell us a bit about WJ Group and your role?

WJ is a road marking company, the biggest in the UK. We’re a family-oriented business and set a lot of store by looking after people. We try to be a good place to work.

I oversee the temporary and permanent markings on most of the significant construction schemes in the UK, like smart motorways, for example.


WJ was one of the scheme’s earliest adopters and is one of the most committed
users of the Passport system out of all Tier 2s. Why is this?

By the nature of lining, we visit sites for short periods of time. For instance, we go in and set the traffic management. Then we come out of
the way while people build, then we come back and line the scheme.

We skip from project to project and aren’t committed to any one site for a long time. Our men would have 20-30 inductions in a year,
each taking up a whole morning with briefings that are all pretty much the same.

We see Passport as a way of simplifying that process so our man can rock up with his smartcard and he can get access. All he needs
now is a scheme-specific induction.


How were things done before Passport?

We were involved from the beginning, so you would expect some teething problems, but there was only a minor one relating to record
transfer which was sorted.

I never hear complaints, so I assume it’s quite easy, and again, the booking of the test (for the HCI) is quite easy as well.

I’m committed to doing it because centralising big aspects of the training seems like a significant step forward. It’s a good system.


Do you face any challenges with the system?

Our trainers felt that with the online training, you lose something that can only come across in person. This makes it okay for experienced
people, but we do like face-to-face training, especially if someone’s new.

All our new starters are signed up to the Passport scheme, receive a card and complete the HCI during their first week of work at WJ as
part of the one-week induction. We add a bit of classroom training to the Passport session, to make sure it all makes sense.


Do you have any advice for organisations like yours looking to implement Passport
across their workforce?

For tier 2s who visit multiple sites, you won’t find many who don’t like it.

So I just think they should get on with it and do it. It is going to be the future.

Tier 1s will use it more and more; it’s got good traction already, thousands of people are on it and hundreds of companies. It’s pretty much got the whole supply chain now.

We just need more and more schemes to make it a requirement.