"Fifty years is a milestone we couldn't have achieved without the continuous support of our fantastic customers! And we'll be here for the next 50 as well. The same Australian owned family business looking after yours."
Australian-owned and operated by the Winson family, the company’s 50-year success story is ascribed to customer-focused solutions and the Signet team, whose approach to forming meaningful partnerships with customers and clients has fostered innovations in service delivery. The company was founded in 1968 by John Winson as an ink and marking company, trading as Ace Marking Equipment. The business was renamed Signet in 1989 when it expanded its product range into packaging supplies. "We were on a family holiday down to Byron Bay and we came up with the name Signet,” says Jack Winson, CEO of Winson Group. “Signet comes from the signet ring. That’s what people used to make their mark with. Our roots were in ink and marking, and that’s why we chose the name Signet.”
In 2000, Signet separated its two divisions of Packaging & Marking and Labelling & Coding into two distinct companies. Packaging & Marking retained the Signet name, whilst the Labelling & Coding division became insignia. Winson Group was also created at this time and became the holding company of Signet and insignia.
From humble beginnings, Signet is now one of the top 100 private companies in Queensland and proudly remains an Australian-owned family business. Signet has evolved to become both an Australian manufacturer of products, as well as a supplier. The company has national contracts with some of Australia’s largest logistics companies, including Toll, Ceva, TNT and DB Schenker, and all of Australia’s major retailers, such as Woolworths and Metcash. In addition to distributing leading industrial brands, such as 3M, tesa and uvex, Signet also sells an exclusive range of Signet's Own products and manufactures industrial and HACCP accredited stretch films and plastics, marking paints, inks and aerosols, labels and signs in Australia.
Signet credits a lot of its success to having a customer centric philosophy. The company has a continuous focus on ensuring customer satisfaction is met across the product range, reliable and fast supply, lowest pricing and customer service. Signet has an award-winning record in Customer Service Excellence, receiving numerous awards from the Customer Service Institute of Australia (CSIA) dating as far back as 2008, including the National award for best medium business in any industry in 2012 and 2014, and both the National Customer Charter and Customer Experience Training Excellence awards in 2015.
The company’s customer-centric mentality first shook the industry back in 1993 when Signet released the first ever Buyers Guide. It was the first comprehensive product catalogue in the industry that published the price of every product resulting in both transparency and price certainty for customers.
John Winson, who originally started the company in his garage a half-century ago, now reflects on the growth of Winson Group, which employs nearly 300 people across Australia. “The company’s in great hands and the calibre of people we have here today is fantastic. I see them all as young, educated, dynamic, interested people who like being here. That’s probably the greatest reward that I feel.” Signet has long been recognised for the value it places on team members throughout the organisation, and the significant contributions they make towards building trusted relationships with clients.
“At the end of the day, it’s about growth, opportunity and security—for everybody who works with us,” says Sandra Winson, Sales and Marketing Operations, Corporate Marketing.
As a long-term investment in up-and-coming talent, the company offers a two-year Signet Graduate Program to give university graduates an opportunity for personal and professional development in a thriving business environment. “About 20 years ago, we embarked on our Graduate Program strategy—bringing people straight out of university into our call centre and then moving from there into the rest of our business,” says Jack Winson.
“And we stand here today and a lot of our middle- and senior-management have actually come through our internal Graduate Program. Watching those people grow with the business and seeing them rise to the challenge as we grow the business… that’s what really lights my fire.”
Looking to the future, Signet will continue to support and encourage its team to form long-term, outstanding relationships with its clients and help Australian businesses better compete in the wider marketplace.
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