Global Doors Ltd working with Leeds Beckett University

With over 25 years of experience, Global Doors Ltd are a leading specialised manufacturer of made-to-order sliding wardrobe doors and bedroom systems. We are an ambitious and forward-thinking company, who launched our two-year management Knowledge Transfer Partnership (mKTP) with Leeds Beckett University (LBU) in November 2020.

For the last five years, Global Doors has seen strong organic growth. Whilst this has been extremely positive and has seen the business grow in revenue and capabilities, we have historically been demand-led, with the direction of development influenced by external market forces. It became evident that if we were to continue to grow as we entered new markets, we needed to improve our management capabilities and develop core strategies and frameworks that are scalable and would facilitate our ambitious plans.

We were introduced to the Research and Enterprise team at Leeds Beckett through our Growth Manager at Wakefield Council. The LBU team listened to what we are trying to achieve and worked with us to identify opportunities to collaborate.  Once we identified the mKTP as a potential vehicle, the university introduced relevant academics and comprehensively supported our successful funding application.

Like many businesses with organic growth, we have a complex and unique make up with multiple systems and processes, and a diverse customer portfolio. We were concerned that due to the complexity, a consultant on a short-term contract couldn’t affect the changes and develop the understanding needed to give us the stability and embedded processes critical to our growth plans.

We have already seen the benefits. We now have a full-time Leeds Beckett staff member embedded in the business, working with us to translate this project into reality. We have the backing of a superb team of Leeds Beckett academics who are experts in their fields and understand the challenges we face. We are setting a strong foundation for growth with our team and customers at its core.

Two-thirds of the cost of the management KTP is funded by the UK government, providing a level of support that makes this project financially achievable.

Engaging with a mKTP and Leeds Beckett has led to other opportunities including:

  • Members of the management team undertaking training and building capabilities via other LBU programmes including: Small Business Leadership Programme and;
  • ERDF AD:VENTURE support for a start-up business via the university’s ACCELERATE project
  • Student projects looking at potential business opportunities, including understanding new and emerging marketplaces and establishing how we can work towards our goal of carbon negativity in the future

Despite being in the early stages of our mKTP, I would highly recommend this to other businesses. The time and effort with the team to create a relevant workplan means our business has a new focus, already generating the changes we simply could not have implemented without the depth of knowledge and support we are receiving. It also opened other opportunities and we were recently delighted to be accepted onto the manufacturing champions programme, which will strengthen our business even further.

Matthew Fletcher, Commercial Director