Scotland-based windows and doors company Vantage Windows & Doors Ltd is our first 2022 winner. The judges were impressed with the way the company rose to the challenge of Covid-19 as well as the company’s charitable work.

We had a chat with Ernie Rea, managing director at Vantage Windows & Doors Ltd, to find out more on how the company has grown over the years.

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A company that stands out

The company celebrated its tenth anniversary in 2021 and, on the back of wining Scottish Home Improvement Awards in 2018 and 2019 for ‘Best Window and Door Company’,

it has also racked up wins at the 2021 Scottish Home Improvement Awards and the VEKA Approved Installers 2020 National Customer Satisfaction awards.

These awards recognise the great customer service Vantage Windows & Doors Ltd stands for. The company puts considerable thought into the process of surveying, installing and adding finishing touches, and it communicates clearly with customers.

The company says it doesn’t use salesmen, or ask for upfront payments – and that, unlike some companies in the field, it certainly doesn’t use pressure sales tactics.

The customer reviews for Vantage Windows & Doors Ltd, tell a similar story – this is a company that cares deeply about its work and its customers. Customer ratings back it up: ‘Vantage don’t compare, they exceed in every respect. No pressure selling just honest and great advice. They were still half the price of one “traditional” glazing company. I wouldn’t so much recommend VANTAGE as question why anyone would ever wish to consider someone else.’

The process consists of an initial visit to carry out a quick survey and gather the required information, which usually takes 15 minutes.  Within 24 hours of the visit, the customer will receive an email with a very detailed quotation and a hard copy is also posted to you within 48 hours. The customer is then encouraged to visit the showroom to see the materials and discuss option to make sure that expectations are met.

Another happy customer also said: ‘This whole process was surprisingly straightforward with excellent communication and absolutely no pressure selling.’

At the time of writing, Vantage Windows & Doors has an outstanding customer rating on the Which? Trusted Traders website. Proudly displaying a 5-star rating (based on 360 reviews), the company has scored high marks for customer service, quality of work and value for money.

Dealing with Covid-19

Of course, the coronavirus pandemic has had a huge impact on traders up and down the country. Having to adapt to a new way of working has proved challenging for many businesses, including Vantage Windows & Doors Ltd.

For a decade, Vantage Windows & Doors Ltd had arranged and ordered our materials to arrive on Sunday for the week ahead but, due to disruption to the supply chain, with missing or faulty items in the orders, the company adapted its systems to meet these challenges and continue to provide excellent service and avoid disruption to the customer.

The company now orders all materials two to four weeks in advance of the job being due for completion. This also meant that it had to face some logistic challenges and expand its storage facility.

But that wasn’t all. As the pandemic hit and, becoming increasingly aware of consumer anxieties, Vantage Windows & Doors also changed its payment systems to allow for card payments in the home. This saves the customer trips to the bank, handling cash or cheque and exchanging cash with the fitters.

The company also brought in new online software allowing customers to go to the website and complete an online quote remotely without any home visit.

Reacting to the result, Teo Horsley, Which? Trusted Trader account manager, said: ’I am delighted that Vantage Windows & Doors Ltd have won trader of the month. They have done so well in adapting the way they are operating during a very rocky year with the pandemic and Brexit, to ensure that their customers have not experienced detriment. Very well deserved!’

Giving back to the community

Rea told us he prefers to keep his charitable activities private, but we were able to coax him into talking about them. Rea said: ‘I am privileged to give back to my local community and I do it because I can. I find the whole experience humbling.’

Vantage Windows & Doors Ltd supports charities all year round but, it is aware that, in the lead up to Christmas, some of the most vulnerable and impoverished in the community are even more in need - so the company is happy to contribute.

In December Vantage Windows & Doors Ltd worked on Christmas projects for its chosen charities, including providing financial for a Christmas dinner for homeless people, responding to a toy donation appeal and offering hampers to families in need.

Trusted Traders – an integral part of the business

Vantage Windows & Doors Ltd is proud of its affiliation with Which? Trusted Traders and it has been keen to show off its Trusted Trader endorsement. The Trusted Trader logo can be clearly seen throughout the entire organisation.

The company displays the Trusted Trader logo on the outer building signage, the showroom, on all its vans and on staff uniform, plus you’ll find it on the company’s letter headed paperwork which goes out to all customers. It is also on the website and visible in all its social media (Facebook and Instagram).

Rea says that Which? is an extremely well-respected brand and is synonymous with providing consumers with the best possible advice when deciding upon making a purchase. ‘I was delighted when I was first approached by them asking if I would like to become an approved installer.’

In fact, Rea sees becoming a Trusted Trader as ‘one of the best business decisions our business ever made’.

Which? Trusted Trader accounts for around 50% of all of the new business, with customers contacting the company from far away to ask that they fit their windows and doors for them.  ‘the quality of our work, our customer care and the way we deal with our customers, I believe is very much in alignment with the values that Which? stand for so I think we have a great partnership.’

Rea also remembers how thorough and strict the process was: ‘In a nutshell, Which? TT’s always have the best interests of the consumer at heart and that’s why the assessment process is so strict, and I commend them for it.’ 

Congratulations to Vantage Windows & Doors Ltd for winning January 2022’s Which? Trusted Trader of the Month award.

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