Published On: Mon, Jun 16th, 2014

David Wigglesworth, Managing Director at Assa Abloy Security Solutions

First Job: The starting block for my career was working at General Domestic Appliances Ltd (a subsidiary of GE/Marconi) based in Peterborough, where I was fortunate enough to be selected by the CEO for a fast track program that led to me gaining my first directorship. However, my first ever job was selling candyfloss, popcorn and rock at Filey seafront over a summer to earn a few pounds.

When did you join your current company: I joined Assa Abloy in 2008, when I was appointed as Managing Director for Adams Rite. However, Union were between Managing Directors, so I shortly got asked if I would take that brand, Assa became my responsibility in 2009. In 2011 we decided that there should be more synergy between the three brands and Assa Abloy Security Solutions was subsequently formed.

Most useful gadget: I think it has to be my Sat Nav – it just makes it so much easier and faster to get around.

Most useful website: Where would we all be without Google? Business person you admire: Jack Welch, CEO of GE. He was an inspirational leader and drove Six Sigma across the globe.

Best business decision: To embrace and define an overall strategy for BIM

Other interests: I’ve always liked cars – I actually fully restored a 1965 MGB, which is my pride and joy.


Working Day: My days are varied to say the least. If I’m not on the road for our wider business operations, I’m behind my desk at around 7:45am and I don’t usually finish until around 7:00pm. Every day is different; tasks can range from having internal meetings with my team, to attending events to having discussions with our leadership executives. Often the day can get pretty busy, so my Head of Marketing and I can end up having our meetings over a pub meal.

Working Location: I was initially based at the Adams Rite office in Swanley, until we relocated in the summer of 2008 and merged with our West Midlands office, that’s how I found myself working in Willenhall. I actually live 170 miles North of the Assa Abloy Security Solutions office, so in the week when I’m not travelling I will stay in a hotel, but I’ve pretty much always worked away from home, so I’m used to a long commute. Our offices are attached to one of our factories – I think we are really lucky to work so closely to where some of the manufacturing takes place.


UnknownThe biggest business decision I have made at Assa Abloy was to launch Assa Abloy Security Solutions to provide a single point of contact for the product brands, Adams Rite, Union, Assa Abloy, Trimec and Pemko. This strategy was aimed to simplify our organisational structure and provide customers with a single point of contact for commercial specification projects, by bringing together a wealth of skills, expertise and branded product solutions to provide a better and a more streamlined service. This decision allowed us to restructure our commercial team to focus on our trade customers and OEMs.

Our Category Product Managers work closely with Assa Abloy’s UKAS accredited performance testing laboratory to ensure a wide range of exclusively developed testing methods are used to assess the performance and integrity of security and hardware products and systems. The facility tests to the highest technical standards and is accredited for a wide range of European standards, as well as being a notified body under the construction products directive. Products that have been tested to the test labs’ standards offer the reassurance that futures costs will be minimal. Through our partnership with Systems Houses, aluminium doorsets have been designed embedded with our ironmongery. Our test lab facilities then offer our partners the confidence that the doorset, inclusive of our ironmongery, will comply with rigorous testing standards.

The lab provides accredited testing to, amongst others; BS EN, BS and PAS for windows, doorsets, locks and hardware to be applied in a variety of market sectors, including residential and commercial facilities. In addition, detention locking can be tested to ASTM, NIJ and other industry recognised standards methods. One of the latest examples of the success of our test lab comes in the form of the Adams Rite Sentinel M range, which features a 3-point panic lock, a 3-point deadlock, and a single-point panic lock. My team worked closely with a number of customers at the UKAS accredited testing facility, to complete indicative load and attack testing to the latest standards, which demonstrated its capacity to form part of a doorset to meet with the current Secured by Design Police (SBD) Preferred Specification for commercial applications. It must be ensured that any hardware used on commercial applications will resist the latest methods of attack, such as brute force and manipulation.

Following the recession, the climate of uncertainty has meant many businesses have been reluctant to make investments; this has created a challenging backdrop for trading in recent times and has resulted in a significant change in purchasing processes. As the industry is on the road to recovery, the long-term value for money of projects is growing in importance. This has been a key consideration in our business strategy driving ‘value for money’ driven by standard and performance.

The widespread uptake of BIM has been a huge motivating factor in our fresh approach to specification. We realised that BIM is an innovation that has the potential to significantly impact on the efficiency of construction. BIM provides a communication portal for everyone involved in a project. By bringing together the different disciplines involved in a building’s development and facilitating the use of a shared model, it is hoped that the building process will become more rationalised and streamlined, which in turn could act as a stimulus for growth to the industry as a whole. BIM is driving specifiers to focus much more on whole life costing and product performance. So, greater emphasis is being placed on costs that occur after an asset has been acquired, including maintenance, repair and replacement expenditure. We understand that making the right initial product investment at the beginning of a project can improve value for money over its life-cycle, so this year my team have been putting their time and energy into discovering which Assa Abloy Security Solutions products can add value into the whole life cost of different buildings.

We aim to extend our BIM offering in the future and welcome the opportunity to use our expertise and knowledge to work with our Systems Houses who are incorporating BIM in to their specification process. The ethos of Assa Abloy Security Solutions is to bring our individual product brands together, so our customers can have the benefit of a combined solution. The launch of our BIM offering and the shake up in our specification approach, with the launch of our product families, signifies a great period of innovation for us, whilst supporting our initial aim of providing a better and more streamlined service.

Over my time at Assa Abloy I have been privileged to work with a fantastic team and my goal is to continue to invest and develop them, so our brands can remain some of the best-known and most trusted names in security. I hope that the changes we have made based on our customer recommendations will benefit them and that we will continue to evolve and enhance as a company to meet market demand.