Focus on Phil Smith, sales person of the year

February 25, 2021

We recently awarded Phil, our Business Development Manager (BDM) for Yorkshire and the North East, the accolade of sales person of the year. Quite an impressive feat, in the middle of a once-in-a-generation pandemic! Our marketing manager Alex Fuidge finds out more about his role, his favourite products and what the post-COVID future holds, here:

How long have you worked for the Caple brand? 

I’ve been a sales person with Caple for 20 months – so almost two years. I am BDM for Yorkshire and the North East.

Built-in Triple Zone Wine Cooler in Black Glass

Why choose Caple?

I could give you at least ten reasons why. Firstly, Caple is the only UK-owned appliance and sink brand, which is important to me. It offers a great variety of quality products – I especially admire our wine cabinets. Then there are our warranties and how we handle them, ensuring every customer’s peace of mind. I could easily list another seven or eight reasons!

What is your favourite category in the Caple brand? 

 I would have to say our Sense ovens are my favourite category. Obviously, the aesthetic is important, but I also love the wide range of products available. Then there’s the functionality versus value element. I’m also excited about our new Sense Premium collection – that’s due to be unveiled soon…

What do you enjoy most about your job?

The retailers I work with but I suppose I would say that! In all seriousness, I really appreciate the calibre of our customers. They have high expectations regarding quality, value and service. And because that’s what we provide, our relationships are great.

How many people do you have in your immediate team?

At the moment it’s just me. Like so many other people, I am working from home. However, I do have Burt the dog to keep me company!

Which appliance is currently your favourite and why?

I think I would have to say our C901i 88cm induction hob, because of its functionality. Thanks to the chef mode, even home cooks can use it just as you would with a series of professional hot plates. I also rate the anti-overflow function so you can say goodbye to pans boiling over. The pan move function is also a really clever feature. There’s stiff competition from our downdraft hobs and also the new C990i. But I still think the C901i incorporates an amazing spec, at an affordable price.

What do you think of the Caple kitchen furniture portfolio?

It would be so easy to say that it’s a great range because of the variety of doors and units available and the carcase quality is also very high. But what I really like is the fact that around 80% of the range can be created at bespoke sizes. So it’s very versatile. As you’d expect from Caple, we go the extra mile with this. We always check the designer’s plan against the order, to help eliminate errors and ensure smooth supply and installation.

What is the best-selling product in your area?

There are so many! However, I must say that our Ril1796 in-column larder fridges are very popular right now, and that looks set to continue. The spec versus price really is amazing, especially when compared against competitor brands.

Perhaps prompted by lockdown, Caple’s Ril1796 tall larder fridges are proving very popular in sales person of the year Phil’s territory.

Please describe a typical day:

Let’s talk about this before lockdown home-working happened! I would spend my time meeting different retailers – owners and staff – across Yorkshire and the North East. Working closely with them, I would identify the best Caple products for their business. I always enjoyed specifying displays, too. Quoting for contract work, and winning a competitive tender, was also very rewarding. My role is quite sociable, and I really enjoy it.

Metallic finishes are one of the biggest trends to emerge in recent years. What do you think of them?

I’ll be honest, when the copper trend first emerged, I had my reservations. But the metallics trend has grown on me, and I must admit these are now my favourite sinks and taps. I especially like our Mode175 Stainless Steel & Gold Sink.

Phil’s favourite metallic sink is our on-trend Mode175GD stainless steel and gold sink.

Why do we have such a loyal customer base?

I haven’t been with the company that long, but so many of my customers rate the value for money we represent. We offer high spec products at very competitive prices. So, it’s all about the stock and the service. I’ve noticed that a lot of our customers have sold Caple products for many years. Happily, newer customers seem to grow quite quickly, too.

What are you looking forward to most when kbb Birmingham show takes place next year? 

KBB is always a launch pad for new products, even though I work for the brand it’s the first time I get to see them in the flesh. Love it.

What do you think the future holds for you as sales person of the year?

I would be more than happy to spend my entire career here. Innovative products keep coming along, which makes my job easier. And in my region, more showrooms are joining us on the journey, which bodes well for the future.


Is there anything else you’d like to add?

2020 was an odd, frustrating year. 2021 hasn’t got off to the greatest of starts either, but Caple has still been a great brand to work for. We aren’t having the easiest time, of course. But so many customers tell me how well we are performing in comparative terms. That makes this difficult period so much more bearable. And I’m really looking forward to meeting my retail customers (hopefully) face-to-face soon.

Interested in meeting more of our Caple family? Click below to read a Q&A with BDM Paul Bruckshaw.