Why 2021 Looks to be Our Most Exciting Challenge Yet
An extraordinary few months has left EMS chief executive Keith Austin energised and excited for what may come next.
Eight months ago, I reflected on EMS’s first 20 years in business. “2021 is full of possibilities,” I wrote. But even then, I had no idea of the growth and excitement that was waiting for us during the first half of this year.
Without a doubt, it has been one the most remarkable and challenging periods in our history. New clients and ground-breaking projects have emerged. Twenty new employees have joined our team. We remain on track to double our workforce. And with 101 vehicles now in our fleet, we are unbelievably proud to be one of the world’s largest and most flexible mobile space providers.
So, yes, it’s been quite a year.
A FRESH LOOK AT OUR FLEET
“The future certainly looks different.”
Our fleet hasn’t just expanded. We’ve conducted a strategic review of all our vehicles. This has enabled us to better support businesses of all sizes.
For many smaller businesses, roadshows are something new. Something untested. So our team has designed a soon-to-be-launched vehicle that’s perfect for pilots. That kind of innovation is something that constantly impresses me. Our team isn’t afraid to think of new solutions – and, more importantly, deliver them with precision and pace.
At the same time, many of the larger businesses we serve have sought to scale up their efforts. Projects across EMEA have expanded rapidly, and we have worked tirelessly to develop our fleet to meet demand.
THE PANDEMIC EFFECT
“When speed mattered more than ever, we were able to respond.”
Over the last 18 months, perhaps our proudest achievement has been the role we’ve played in supporting the NHS – and other businesses – in the battle against COVID-19. No other vehicle supplier has responded in the same way.
So far, we have 26 testing vehicles, 10 testing modular structures, nine laboratories, two vaccination units, and one vehicle supporting COVID-19 clinical trials. That’s 48 solutions helping the UK navigate a path through the most difficult year many of us have ever faced.
We’ve become experts at providing testing solutions for different settings. Our vehicles have been deployed at speed to locations with high case numbers, giving the NHS crucial mobile testing and vaccine facilities. We’ve also worked with Randox, Source Bioscience and London Lab, providing private COVID testing facilities in locations as diverse as airports, churches, and an Apple TV production set.
OUR LARGEST EVER PROJECT
“This could literally change the lives of millions of people.”
Away from COVID-19, I’m equally delighted that our largest ever project is also on the frontline of UK healthcare.
Launching later this year, a four-way collaboration between EMS, Grail, the NHS and Cancer Research will facilitate one of the world’s most ambitious clinical trials. With a simple blood test, patients aged over 50 will be screened for more than 50 types of cancer – including those that are hard to detect in their early stages, such as head and neck and oesophageal cancers.
Our vehicles will be used as part of the NHS Grail pilot, which will start in autumn 2021 and will include 140,000 participants. We are humbled to be part of it, and every single member of our team is ready to give their all to help take this medical breakthrough from pilot potential to everyday reality.
THE FUTURE LOOKS BRIGHT
“Our expansion won’t stop anytime soon.”
Elsewhere, we’ve provided roadshow vehicles that have enabled Duracell and GE Healthcare to deliver product demonstrations across Europe. And by taking Duracell into France in February, we successfully completed our first post-Brexit tour in mainland Europe – another amazing achievement for the team!
On top of our 20 new team members this year, our expansion continues at pace with live vacancies across the EMS Group in both EMS – The Roadshow Experts and EMS Healthcare. If any of those roles appeal to you, please do get in touch!
We also have other big changes in the pipeline, but I’ll save that for another day. For now, I just want to express my absolute pride and thanks in everything our team and our suppliers have achieved. They are truly the best of the best.