In Your Shoes - Alastair DuncanAll members Prev: Leanne Carling Next: Caroline Rochford
I am 41 years old and married to Heather for 11 years. I have two children, Effy (8) and Murdo (5). I left school at 17 after my Highers. I went to Fife College to study media and communication. I then went on after that to Telford College in Edinburgh to study television production. I went on to do some videography freelance work for BBC, Fife Council amongst others. I then went on to work for MediacCo as part of the marketing dept.
As I settled down to start a family I re-joined the family business of Buckler Boots after working for them on and off over the years. I then used the Buckler Boots platform to open a dedicated workwear shop with on site printing facilities, the WorKit Centre as I felt there was a gap in the market. I now am director or Buckler Boots and The WorKit Centre and do both jobs on a daily basis from our premises in Fulton Road in Dundee.
In my spare time I am an avid cricket player and fan, playing for Largo Cricket Club and occasional Sunday football player.
MondayMonday 29 October 2018
Late start to the day as my child minder was ill during the night so I am on child drop off this morning. Luckily the shop still opens on time as my colleagues are in and the added bonus is that I miss the traffic on the way into work. We are on the Kingsway at Myrekirk so the traffic can be a blessing and a curse, we often have workmen popping in for hard hats etc after they have been caught in traffic and looked over and seen our sign!.
First off for the day is coming in and looking at internet orders that have arrived over the weekend. Our new website launched last month and has been a big success already. We have a few click and collect orders for local customers and a big order from a new customer in Newcastle. The web shop has been great for sales as it means you are making money even when we are closed and selling to customers that have never been to Dundee. (Chamber members can get 10% off anything on the site by using promo code chamber10).
This afternoon I look at social media, I set up a new bundle deal so customers can get all of their winter essentials for one price including logo printing. This is something the big companies do so we like to keep up with the national companies, ours is even cheaper this year so hoping to get a big response on FB and Instagram with this one!
Closing in on end of month, I email a lot of our big account customers to try and get a few more orders to ensure we get our target, a lot of our customers have been with us for years so they expect my email I’m sure.
TuesdayTuesday 30 October 2018
Got my Buckler boots hat on today, first meeting of the morning is with the directors and sales team deciding on the RRP for our new safety trainer coming in next week. Tricky meeting as so many opinions to take into account and can impact our sales and profitability. The sales team ( we have 5 sales reps covering the Uk and Ireland) are all keen to price as low as possible to attract a different customer base in tool outlets. The finance team want to protect margin. I am uniquely placed in the discussion as I sell direct to the public in The WorKit Centre and also need to be aware of the bigger picture for Buckler Boots.
In the afternoon we are talking about new product development. Buckler Boots may be a Dundee company but we sell all over the UK and Europe so we need to make sure products are targeting the right markets. Can’t say too much but we are looking at some industry beating new products, the emphasis being on new lighter weight materials to make the boots but with great spec. This is one of my favourite parts of my job – looking for new products that put us ahead of the competition by being better than anything else on the market.
Last thing I am on delivery duty, I am off to drop a big order off at Hillcrest Maintenance Group, they are a regular customer with us and we drop off at customers a lot of the time to help make things easier for them. I enjoy this part of my job as it means I get a chance to chat with customers about what they need and maybe a wee chance to sell them new products.
WednesdayWednesday 31 October 2018
More printing today. We have an in house logo printer but when times are busy it is all hands on deck to get the items back to the customer, we pride ourselves on our quick turnaround so everything else is on the back burner today while we all get on with some big orders. Winter is definitely on everyone’s minds as today we have 40 fleeces for one of our account customers, and twenty waterproof jackets for another.
After a busy day at work, head home to take my son Murdo to his first Halloween party of the year! Very early I think but my wee vampire seems chuffed to bits with the bobbing for apples and dancing.
ThursdayThursday 01 November 2018
Today we are setting up accounts for a couple of new customers. One is based at Dundee Airport and are looking to kit out their teams with polo shirts and softshell jackets to face their customers. We also have a new account for a flour factory based in Fife. They are looking for wellies and waterproofs. We really do have so many varying customers, I think that’s what makes each day go quickly. No two days (or hours for that matter) are the same. In the shop today I have served a gardener looking for new boots for him and his wife, a man who does maintenance for wind turbines which involves climbing up the outside of wind turbines, a young lad in getting a boiler suit for college, a maid of honour pricing up t shirts with printing for a hen do and a few farmers.
FridayFriday 02 November 2018
Another new product launch in the shop today, this time for boot care products. Might not seem exciting to all but I helped source these products after getting a lot of requests from our customers , and helped with the design of the packaging and sourcing the best quality product so I am very happy to see it out on sale . We keep innovating and we bring new products into the shop most weeks. We work with over 80 different suppliers (including Buckler Boots of course) so we always have something new to see when customers come in.
This afternoon the Helly Hansen rep is in. He is showing us products from Autumn/ Winter next year. Some absolutely amazing new lines , and we spend a good few hours looking at each product in detail so we can make the right decisions based on what we think our customers will want next year. We are already seeing more grey in work uniform this year and red is the Hi Visibilty colour everyone is talking about so it looks like these trends will continue into 2019.