Domestic and Commercial Glazing Manufacturer, Supplier and Installer


Attendees to this year’s FIT Show – a trade exhibition for the fenestration industry held at the NEC, were treated to a comprehensive schedule of insightful and thought-provoking seminars during the three-day event.   Tracey Jackson, business development manager at Howells Patent Glazing was fortunate to take a seat on the ‘Facing up to the skills shortage’ panel.

Alongside representatives from the Glass & Glazing Federation (GGF), Solar Group and Building our Skills, Tracey discussed the significant skills shortage the industry faces, what’s been done to address that over the past three years (since the previous FIT show), and what has/hasn’t been done to re-skill colleagues and attract new talent.

 Tracey’s contribution was informative and inspirational.  As a strategic manager of Howells Patent Glazing, a small-medium enterprise (SME) in the Black Country, Tracey is well-aware of the challenges her business and the wider industry faces.

Unlike many businesses of this size, or indeed larger organisations, Howells has been proactive in redressing the balance.  It has and continues to upskill staff across all levels of the business, offering adult NVQ’s to all.  It has nurtured staff through NVQs and courses ranging from level two through to five and seven!

Howells opens its doors regularly for work experience-related opportunities, including factory tours.  It offers apprenticeships in different disciplines, and has two level three engineering apprentices, currently – both of whom were encouraged to attend the FIT show!

On a personal level, Tracey has been an enterprise advisor for two local centres and was selected to be a Mayor’s Mentor.  Alongside her sister and fellow shareholder of Howells, Debbie Willetts, Tracey has worked incredibly hard to achieve relevant and valuable qualifications for both personal development and for the benefit of the business.  These include PG certificate in Coaching and Mentoring Level 7; TQUK Level 3 Award in Education and Training (RQF) and NCFE Certificate in Assessing Vocational Achievement Level 3.

Given her impressive CV and passion for future-proofing the industry, Tracey is regularly approached for public speaking.  One new and exciting opportunity is a presenting slot, alongside Debbie, on a local radio station to discuss all things mental health and well-being.

So, if you’re looking for a change of career or wish to embark on your work journey, then we encourage you to consider the fenestration industry.  Businesses like Howells have ample opportunity for growth, job satisfaction and personal development.