VIBES Award: Management SME


  • 1,886t of waste treated, with 95.3% diverted from landfill for 2015
  • Working with glass manufacturer to increase the recycling content of new windows from 33% to 40%.
  • Electricity use stabilised whilst turnover increased by 30%
  • Undertaking EST training - trained 22 drivers; with annual savings of around £10,000 and 27 tonnes of CO2
  • 3 Biomass heating systems have been installed saving 223 tonnes of CO2 annually.
  • 113 work experience positions created; 75 full time jobs; 97 apprenticeships undertaken
  • Their core product helps to reduce carbon emissions and address fuel poverty
Sponsored by: Centre for Sustainable Practice and Living
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Sustainability has underpinned the success of CMS Window Systems since its inception in 2006. Today it is one of the largest UK companies designing, manufacturing and installing PVCu, aluminium and timber aluminium composite windows, doors and curtain walling from manufacturing and recycling facilities in North Lanarkshire and Fife. External wall insulation and cladding solutions are also provided. Local authorities, housing associations, large main contractors, utility companies, professional specifiers, trade partners and CMS Approved Retailers are all part of its diverse client base.

The VIBES Management Award recognises businesses whose management systems deliver continuous improvement in environmental performance. The category is aimed at businesses that are taking a holistic approach to environmental improvement and can demonstrate the associated economic and social benefits that have been achieved.

CMS is to be commended for their approach to continuously instigating environmental improvements. The judges were particularly impressed with the way the company are pushing the market to higher specifications for heat loss (‘u’ values) and working with glass manufacturers to increase the recycling content of new windows.

New Barcode Tracking software has been installed in the factory this ensures streamlined production and nearly eliminates waste within the factory – manufacturing wastage has been cut by 2%. In addition, the BIM compliant Design department value engineered projects saving customers hundreds of thousands of pounds on projects in reduced material, labour and energy usage.

CMS were one of the first companies to remove all waste from the sites where they fit their products. The waste is transported and sorted at their two sites for onward recycling. This is a labour intensive process but helps them to achieve impressive recycling rates and control recovered material quality.

The judges recognised the savings made in relation to electricity use - electricity use has stabilised whilst turnover has increased by 30% in the last year. This is equivalent to a 30% reduction in electricity use per unit of activity. Savings were also identified in waste management, transport fuel and from lean manufacturing techniques reducing waste.

The company employ over 245 staff. A full time environmental champion has been appointed who monitors and reports environmental data against a range of targets. Induction and revision training is supplied to all staff which includes sustainability and recognition of the environmental credentials of the company.

CMS opened an Innovation Hub in 2014, this is a unique centre to improve collaboration and share best practice amongst the supply chain and customers for sustainable construction. The hub was an upgrade from a G rated building and was retrofitted with external “stone wool” insulation blocks, highly thermal efficient windows and an air source heat pump with an VRV Intelligent Heat Recovery System, which recovers heat from one area of the building and transfers it to another, it now has an A-rating for energy efficiency.

Future plans include solar panels, building an ecohouse, water reclamation, wind turbine, and expand usage of the Innovation Hub.

The company has established a clear commitment to environmental excellence. Environmental credentials are core to the company’s ethos and they feel that this has made a difference to expansion and winning contracts.

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Martin McCrimmon, business systems director at CMS Window Systems, said: "It is a great honour to win the VIBES Management award. Since our inception in 2006, we knew we could do things differently and better in a way that would benefit all stakeholders - our customers, our employees and the local communities in which we operate, whilst having minimal negative impact on the environment."

“We recognised that by setting up our business and operating it in a way that other manufacturers could only aspire to, required a clear strategy from the outset that considered the environmental and energy impact of every aspect of how our business runs.”