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A lot has changed at Mackwell    

Can gathering data really save lives

Since the tragic events of June 2017, which saw 72 people lose their lives in the fire that engulfed Grenfell Tower in West London, the area surrounding building safety and compliance is now, more than ever before, at the forefront of people’s minds.

Although not defined as a public or commercial premise, the 24 storey residential tower block contained many communal areas such as escape routes, assembly points and walkways which would have required a building risk assessment to help ensure the safety of the occupants and minimize the risk of fire. Amongst other things, the risk assessment would have defined the need for evacuation aids such as the provision of a fire prevention system, sprinkler system and emergency lighting.

Click to read the full article

Mackwell Provides Emergency Lighting to BBC’s DIY SOS: The Big Build Special

As part of the BBC’s DIY SOS: Big Build project, Mackwell provided its emergency lighting systems and technical expertise to an ambitious project to create the North Kensington Community Centre and rebuild the Dale Youth Boxing Club which was destroyed in the Grenfell Tower fire.

The team at DIY SOS: Big Build, led by presenter Nick Knowles, was determined to do something to help those involved to recover from the trauma and devastation of the fire. After consulting with the Grenfell community, a plan was put in place to build a bespoke facility to provide both the community space and a new home for the Dale Youth Boxing Club, which was previously located on the second floor of the tower.

Click to read full article

A well deserved promotion

Weiyuan has recently been promoted to the role of Senior Software Engineer and has taken on the responsibilities for all key projects in the Software Development. Weiyuan has demonstrated a willingness to adapt and learn new skills, proving invaluable not only in the development of new products but also in supporting our existing portfolio of software-based products.

Mackwell’s market areas now have a greater demand for intelligent systems and related software-based products. This is a focus area, reflected by a shift in our development activities, and so Weiyuan will help drive some exciting new developments through the business next year.

Inside Mackwell

Streamlining SMT
The oldest MYDATA My9 has now been decommissioned and sold. As a result, the surface mount area in Production has a new layout to include a full set up area and Production communications
Board. The set up area ensures a quick changeover between WIPs and better control of feeders and SMT stocks.

New workwear
New Production Lab Jackets have been chosen and will be issued early next year. These are DESCO Statshield ESD coats. The coats will display the Mackwell Logo and enhance our corporate image, whilst protecting product from ESD damage.

Whos on Location
Due to GDPR the old antiquated, paper visitor books are no longer compliant. To support this Mackwell are introducing a new visitor system. The system is called ‘Whos On Location’ and acts as both a
visitor and fire evacuation system. From January there will be an iPad and printer in the main reception that all visitors and service providers much use to sign in and sign out of the building.

R&D get new 3D printer
The R&D department have recently invested in a “Fused Layer Deposition” machine, more commonly known as a 3D printer. With advancements in this technology over the last few years, printers capable of high-quality industrial prototyping have become readily available at a fraction of previous costs, meaning a 3D printer was quickly identified as a commercially viable purchase for Mackwell, in order to bolster its design and manufacturing capabilities.

Whilst 3D printing is a relatively new and still quite novel technology for the business, it does have a few significant benefits to the department and to the company as a whole. Armed with such a printer and a basic knowledge of the CAD process, Mackwell and its partners are able to review and adapt mechanical designs to suit our project requirements, at a much more effective cost point and speed than with a third-party rapid prototyping company. Whilst the system does have its limitations, Mackwell’s machine from Creality3D has a significant build envelope of up to 400mm2 which enables replication of the majority of our mechanical component range, and allowing printing of design details as fine as 0.1mm – perfect for those intricate clips, or fixing points for some of the most complex Mackwell product designs.

Employee profile

Richard James
Product Information Technician

Richard joined Mackwell in July this year for the role as Product Information Technician within the R&D department. His preliminary focus is gathering and entering product information, organising and managing product content including datasheets, labels and performing analysis of BOM structures.

Richard previously worked in the electrical substation industry in Staffordshire for nine years as a document controller so the new role was a perfect fit for him.

20 years of service

Kam joined Mackwell as a Sales Office Assistant on 16th November 1998. It was her first role in UK after moving from Canada. Kam grew up in Canada with her family but married her husband, Avtar in 1998 and decided to moved to the UK.

She progressed to Sales Office Supervisor a couple of years after joining Mackwell and later to Customer Service Supervisor in 2016.

Kam has seen many changes while with Mackwell, made many friends and also had three children which is a full time job in itself! Congratulations Kam and thank you for your hard work and continued loyalty!

Charity fund raising at Mackwell

Each quarter we raise money for a different charity. The charities we give to are voted for by yourselves. The charity donations come from our monthly dress down days, cakes sales, football cards and any other fund raising activities throughout the year. This year you all made a huge difference to many people, so thank you. Thank you for giving your hard earned cash to help others in need.

St Giles Hospice - January to March 2018
At the beginning of the year we raised a total of £210.50 for St Giles Hospice.

Birmingham Mind - April to June 2018
We improved on the first quarters fund raising with a total of £240.99 raised for Birmingham Mind in the second quarter.

Birmingham Childrens Hospital - July to September 2018
A whopping £413.05 was raised for Birmingham Children’s Hospital in quarter three this year

Breast Cancer Now - October 2018 Wear It Pink Day
We had a brilliant result in October with a massive £572.22 raised for Breast Cancer Now’s annual Wear it Pink Day

Prostate Cancer UK - October to December 2018
So far for the last quarter of the year, we have raised £248.35 for Prostate Cancer UK.

The Donkey Sanctuary - December Festive Day and Christmas Raffle
With December festivities still in full swing, we don’t have a final figure as yet for The Donkey Sanctuary.


The ELEDD MICRO range of emergency drivers from Mackwell completes the ELEDD family and adds new intelligence to emergency lighting. The Origin technology is MICRO’s core and enables
the driver to be pre-configured to suit defined applications, this includes varied output levels in maintained and nonmaintained operations as well as ability to be configured to specific charge and
discharge levels prior to shipment allowing perfect harmony of the control gear, battery and LED load. 

Suitable for a range of battery chemistries, the ELEDD MICRO is designed to use nickel cadmium (NiCd) and nickel metal hydride (NiMH) as these currently are the only battery chemistries for emergency lighting approved by ICEL. The modular approach to the design of ELEDD MICRO ensures that developing battery technologies can be accommodated in the future. 

Intelligent battery management alongside Mackwell’s SmartCharge technology is integral to the design, allowing optimum efficiency of batteries and prolonging life in high temperature applications. 

Available as a conversion module, Mackwell has a solution suit every application.

Emergency just became intelligent!

Mackwell Origin

Mackwell’s Origin is an innovative software driven platform that provides flexibility in manufacture and operation. Programmable outputs allow Originpowered emergency modules to be fine-tuned to individual applications and drive a wide range of LED’s. The intelligent battery management software within Origin uses specialised algorithms to safeguard the batteries. Detailed diagnostics can be obtained from the micro-processor, enabling insights about performance and the environmental conditions in which the emergency module is operating.

Spotlight on...

Middle East India & Africa
The news from the Middle East is generally all good, even though some regions, such as Saudi Arabia are still proving tough in terms of projects slowing down.

We have seen some excellent growth with our Mackwell branded emergency luminaires business with our sales manager Dilshod Tishabayev and completed some fantastic retail projects recently
with our XYLUX product range.

The Dubai Mall fashion and food court extensions have been completed this year as well as the new Nike store, Dolce & Gabana, Gucci, Chanel, YSL, Zara, Alexandra Maqueen, Carolina Herrera, H&M, Breitling, Mothercare and River Island stores, on the retail side and a new KFC, The world famous Hard Rock Café, Starbucks, Five guys and Cheesecake Factory in the food and beverage area, all of which enhances our reputation in the region.

The new Nike store, in Dubai Mall, is the biggest Nike store in the Middle East and largest single floor Nike store in the world. We customized our XYLUX LD5 black units to match their open plan black ceiling and turned it around quickly for them; the customer was very happy with the result.

In October we took an order for the Ras Abu Aboud stadium, which is a 40,000 seater stadium being constructed for the 2022 FIFA World Cup. The stadium is being designed with the environment in mind, using recycled shipping containers which can be dismantled and moved to a new location once the World Cup is over.

Also in October we introduced a new member to the Middle East team, Amr Ezzat. Amr will be managing Egypt & Saudi Arabia, focusing on growing the distribution market business in the regions.

Hong Kong & APAC
The Hong Kong team have traditionally focused the majority of their efforts on the mainland China market, with customers and partners who mainly export to European countries who values our long history and reputation in Europe. We have a solid network of lighting manufacturers in China who buy our LED conversion kits and assemble them in LED battens, panels, down-lights and
bulkheads amongst many innovative varieties of luminaires that require integrated emergency functionality.

China and South East Asia have always been very cost competitive regions and the trend keeps moving lower. For this reason we need to not only work hard on our product competitiveness but also up-sell our value added solutions in this market: DALI and Mackwell ORIGIN are two excellent platforms for Mackwell which can win projects where quality emergency prevails over low cost products with questionable compliance and life testing. The high end market in these areas can be seen as early adopters and projects such as the Hong Kong Avenue of Stars revitalization, a new 5-star hotel tower in Vietnam, and the Recycling facility in Singapore are early adopters of the mackwell emergency solutions.

This is the reason why in the New Year (of the Pig!) our plan is to enhance relationships with major Chinese OEMs whilst at the same time promoting the new Origin platform, coupled with innovative emergency solutions such as ICE and XY-Fi working alongside our long standing and proven XYLUX luminaire range in the high end specification market in South East Asia, the world’s fastest-growing region.

Projects Mackwell are involved in

Central Criminal Courts of Justice
Mackwell partnered with Profile to supply an emergency lighting system that was suitable for the court building. This included consideration of the needs of various different groups; Judges, members of the public, people serving on juries and defendants. 

Mackwell provided N-Light, XYLUX’s LD5 and LR4 along with XYVEX exit signs.

Dublin Airport Terminal 1
Also with Profile, Mackwell supplied the emergency lighting system to Terminal 1 for The D.A.A (Dublin Airport Authority). The system needed to provide an emergency lighting load for 180 minutes
and be as seamless as possible.

A 10 lux average was required in all public areas due to the high ceilings. Mackwell provided XYLUX’s LD5, LR4 and LS along with ELEDD to support their requirements.

University College Cork, Ireland
Glamox and Lightsolutions have teamed up to provide lighting and emergency lighting upgrades to UCC Butler, Cooperage and Enterprise buildings with the aid of Capital grants to greatly reduce their energy usage. 

Mackwell supplied XYLUX LD5 downlights to provide the college with a completely compliant solution.

Instant Upright
Mackwell’s partner Lightsolutions have recently been appointed as emergency lighting solution provider to Instant Upright, a global supplier of mobile tower systems. Mackwell’s XYLUX LS AutoTest products were supplied to this project which reduces the labour intensive aspect of mandatory testing as the products self-test and give a visual indication if the test carried out passed 
or failed.

Wexham Hospital Undercroft
Working directly with the NHS and continuing our partnership throughout the hospital, Mackwell offered a unique solution to the challenging Undercroft of Wexham Hospital. The conditions required an IP65 fitting, suitable for use with PIR’s but also containing high quality, Mackwell fittings for use with N-Light. 

The solution agreed upon with the NHS was to use LLL and the built in XY-Fi mounting points to replace their current inefficient fluorescent luminaires.

The Madison Canary Wharf 
One of London’s most talked about new residential developments, The Madison reaches 53 stories up to the sky offering unparalleled views of one of London’s most dynamic areas. Mackwell worked with a new customer, 3E to provide a compliant emergency lighting system. Mackwell provided ELEDD MIDI 55 & 200 fittings, XYLUX LR4’s and ICE to support their requirements.

Twickenham Stadium 
The home of England Rugby contains a complete N-light system controlling hundreds of luminaires including XYVEX, LR and conversions. During the project we worked closely with Formation and Mode Lighting.

Employee survey update

Company benefits
As a result of the Rewards & Recognition survey group we now have an official list of our company benefits...

Click here to view then all

Open door policy
Mackwell are launching coffee mornings with the directors. The idea of these meetings is to create an opportunity for you to get to know our directors, speak to them about something specific, discuss any views or opinions relating to the business you may have or simply just to talk about general day to day working life.

The first ‘Coffee Time’ will be held on Monday 14th January at 10:30 and will be hosted by Neil Eardley and Rene Joppi. Spaces for each session are limited so, if you would like to attend this session, there will be a form on the noticeboard in the link from the beginning of January, please note your name down and a brief description of the topic you would like to discuss.

Flexible working hours
We started trialling Flexitime for Office staff, in August this year and officially introduced the scheme in November after some fantastic feedback.

Flexitime is a scheme where an organisation gives its employees the opportunity of a flexible working hours arrangement. The scheme is beneficial for both the employee and the company.
Some of the benefits have included:
  • Employees have noted an improvement to their work/life balance as they get to spend more time with their family in the evenings.
  • It takes the stress out of the commute to work as you can now start earlier
  • Have more time to support the family and handle emergencies without having to book holiday days.
  • The company gets the benefit of better staff morale and job satisfaction.
  • Increases employee staff retention, satisfaction and production.
Under the scheme there are core times during the day when employees must be at work whilst the rest of the working day is ‘flexitime’, in which staff can choose when they work, subject to achieving the total monthly hours.

Any hours working in addition to these hours are credited to a flexitime balance. If an employee has enough hours banked, they can turn this into flexi-leave (time off).

Each employee is required to keep there own time sheet and clock in and out using the biometric clocking-in/out systems. This has the added benefit of giving employees accountability of their own time, further supporting our campaign to improve employee engagement.

Operations and Human Resources have been looking at solutions and options to roll a similar scheme out to Production staff. Some of the ideas include sacrificing break times, starting earlier, finishing later and allowing time off in lieu for personal appointments.

Should you have any constructive ideas that you would like us to consider, please speak to a member of the Rewards & Recognition team.

Pulse survey
We will be conducting a pulse survey in January. A Pulse survey is a small, targeted survey, aimed at a specific subject. The idea of Pulse surveys is to give us an better understanding of the progress being made as a result of changes made. The Pulse survey in January will be focused around communication and will be short and to the point.

We will distribute the survey in a similar way to the previous survey.

If you have any special requests or require assistance completing the pulse survey, please speak to the Human Resources department

The Rewards & Recognition survey group have been looking at pay benchmarking and I can confirm this is a working progress.

Due to the minimum wage increase due to take place in April 2019, this is taking a little longer than expected. A further update will be provided in due course.

Salary extras
As you may already know, we have now launched our new employee benefits platform called ‘Salary Extras’.

The idea is, to provide something for everyone, with savings to be made across a wide range of offers and deals!

Some of the benefits include lifestyle benefits to cover all aspects of your shopping needs from groceries to gifts and gadgets, there are thousands of offers and deals to discover through Salary Extras.

If you’re planning day trips, weekend breaks or a great family holiday, there’s plenty of offers from big name brands helping save money. You might even be able to splash out a bit with the savings.

Whether you’re looking to make everyday savings or reduce the cost of getting away, you’ll find it all available in one place.

Everyone likes a good deal and making savings has never been this easy.


Near misses
A near miss is a tool used to identify any potential issues within operations and health and safety.

A near is anything that could potentially cause injury to any employee or visitor to Mackwell.

It can also be classified as any potential operation process failure such as an incorrect BOM, build instruction etc.

Throughout the year we have implemented a number of improvements including education which has helped drastically reduce the number of near misses.

Always remember a near miss is not a bad thing, its a positive and helps implement and improve processes.

This only reaffirms the company’s ethos to continuous improvement.

As a direct influence of the near miss tool we have seen control and drop of accidents reported.

Even the accidents we have had reported have been minor.

The PCAR (permanent corrective action report) has a direct influence on how we handle accidents and is used to ensure all concerns are closed down.

Top 100 Products
The latest Product Management initiative is designed to ensure our top 100 selling products are ‘perfect’. Each product is being reviewed all relevant departments, this includes BOMs, labels, operational processes and work instructions.

These top 100 products account for almost 80% of last ears turnover. The goal of this project is to unify all departments to strives towards the highest quality products on the market today.

Quality & Environmental
Mackwell managed to transition with a score of 100% to the new BSI standards 9001-2015 and 14001-2015.

As a result we keep our BSI certification with is essential to operations and customer requirements.

There were 10 new written standard we had to comply to under the, ‘Plan Do Check Act (PDCA). These included management reviews, environmental legislation, legal obligations and demonstration of a robust Quality Management System.

Mackwell completed this transition ahead of schedule with the deadline being September and was one of the first businesses in the region to achieve this transition.

QA042 new implementation
QA042 a sample processing procedure which basically takes and Good In, Operational and Despatch goods into a sample processing procedure and ensures they are following PDAR.

This involves selected materials entering, leaving, and in the manufacturing process of the business are to be sample inspected.

Sampling schemes are indexed by acceptance Quality limits (AQL) for lot by lot inspection.

Initially this has been introduced in Goods Inwards but is now to be introduced in Despatch and Operations which will ensure the Quality of all Mackwell products.

AQL is an industrial standard that is recognised across the industry and used by tier 1 companies.

The implementation of this is particularly important to Mackwell since strategy has moved to outsource sub-contract supplied materials.

Quality Customer Support
Over the last quarter the Quality department have been more heavily involved in first response to customer issues.

By attending site in both Israel and Dubai further customer escalations have been mitigated and potential returns reduced.

There has been a particular benefit to operations as by understanding issues encountered on site, the route cause in the factory can be illuminated and gives us the opportunity to educate the customer on material handling and product storage.

Enquire Today

For more information, please call us on +44 (0) 1922 458 255 or send us a message below.

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