Getting the grass-cutting wrong is the biggest source of complaints from the public, and with about a third of our business associated with grass cutting, investment in both staff and machinery is absolutely key to delivering an efficient and high quality service. Far from ‘letting it grow under our feet’ we are constantly evaluating new equipment and techniques for grass cutting of all types which give the greatest operational flexibility, maximise operator productivity, and make best use of expensive prime movers and the latest multi-functional equipment. With our new Acorn service management system now launched, we’re incorporating GPS and machine productivity monitoring to improve wide area mowing efficiency, operator productivity and provide clients with accurate data on areas mown. We like to work closely with manufacturers to develop more innovative and weather-flexible ways of maintaining grass. We also think it’s important to involve staff and clients alike in prototype trials so all parties benefit from ‘sharp end’ input at the development stage. Our links with manufacturers ensure a proactive response to any problems and have in the past resulted in bespoke solutions to specific site problems. With the safe mowing of slopes and banks high on the duty of care agenda, specific attention is given to the specification of machinery which is undertaken in conjunction with the contract stakeholders and the company QHSE Manager. Every effort is made to reduce the amount of pedestrian operations on slopes through the use of remote control banks mowers. Where angles and access allow, bespoke tool carriers are employed whose multifunctional configuration allows them to undertake a variety of other tasks with the same operator. When specifying equipment for a specific contract or client we consider a variety of criteria. Our aim is to provide a locally-focussed service with excellent national support. This support gives our green space managers an up-to-date and operationally efficient complement of equipment together with practices that maintain and improve standards. It is idverde’s policy to supply new equipment for the start of all contracts from suppliers with proven track records in after-sales support specific to our industry. This spreads the risk should there be a product failure or unforeseen recall and it also maintains competitiveness and ensures the best product for the task. Whilst innovation and machine development increases productivity and utilisation, it must work hand-in-hand with health and safety, changing legislation and vehicle compliance. This has resulted in the construction of bespoke machinery transporters and localised solutions in the use of agricultural tractors for wide area mowing.