Helen Dimmick’s industry experience and knowledge have allowed her to offer expert advice and consultation services to business owners, designers, manufacturers, suppliers, and industry organisations. Adding another feather to her cap is her role as a Guardian at The Sheffield Assay Office.

The Sheffield Assay Office was established in 1773 and is one of the four UK assay offices. The main aim of the office is to provide consumer protection for customers purchasing precious metals through the means of hallmarking and analytical services. It works to support the Hallmarking Act of 1973. 

Created by the Act of Parliament in 1773, The Guardians of the Standard of Wrought Plate is a body of 30 people who overlook the daily functioning of the Sheffield Office. Not only that, but the guardians also provide their input on various aspects of business such as trading standards, law, bullion, prices, enforcement et cetera.

The primary role of the Guardian is :

  1. Monitor and as appropriate critique and advise on any aspect of the management and strategy of business
  2. Confirm that high standards of integrity, probity and corporate governance are practiced throughout the Office
  3. Approve the accounts
  4. Approve the members of the Executive Committee
  5. Assist the Executive Committee to identify potential new Guardians 
  6. Become familiar with the operations of the Office and be willing to advise and to make introductions in areas where the Office has a need
  7. To act as an ambassador for the Office to promote its interests in the communities in where the operate

The Guardians are also required to attend two meetings in the year. These take place in April and October.

CMJ Trade Event
CMJ Trade Event and from Left to Right shows Danny Smith Head of Hallmarking SAO, Philip Ainsworth, Helen Dimmick and Ashley Carson (Assay Master)

Helen joined her role as a guardian in June 2019 and her contributions have been laudable. During her time there she has upheld the standards of The Assay Office. She has also attended the bi-annual meetings. She understands the need for consumer protection as well as consumer awareness. Her work as a guardian has promoted both. Not only hallmarking but she has also been a keen participant in other services provided by The Assay Office such as nickel free testing and mercury screening. As a guardian, she has upheld the integrity and methodical working of The Assay Office.

Helen has also been employed by The Assay Office as a consultant. Her expertise lies in leadership and strategic growth. Her work as a consultant saw the introduction of innovative staff training. Her approach to management involves building values of trust between team members and their upliftment. She understands the importance of sharing information and working alongside all team members to achieve a tangible result. She recognizes the talent that each team member has to offer. She understands the need for collaboration and communication between team members. She believes that while recognizing talent is vital, its application is also important. She actively promotes collaboration and unity among the team. She places emphasis on this to deliver a supportive working environment. The motive of her trust driven training aimed to improve the morale of employees and reduce absenteeism. It was also to facilitate innovation.

Not only that, but she has also focused on client-focused initiatives. Planned visits to customers’ businesses will enable them to see the journey of goods hallmarked by the Assay Office. Her development also focuses on providing exceptional customer services.

Helen has also been an active participant in the other requirements of her role of Guardian. She has participated in trade events that required her presence as a Guardian of The Sheffield Assay Office. 

IJL 2019 at the opening of the Spotlight on Sheffield by the Mayor of Sheffield
IJL 2019 at the opening of the Spotlight on Sheffield by the Mayor of Sheffield

Alongside Jill White of Andy Hanselman Consulting, Helen organized an evening of ‘Treasures and Tours’ on Tuesday 18th June. This event welcomed over 35 SCR Female Entrepreneurs and Directors. The event showcased the work of Analytical Services department of the Sheffield Office.  At the event, she spoke of jewellery items and the long lost treasures. She spoke about its significance and the sentimental value it carries. The evening was a delightful success. 

Ashley Carson, Assay Master and Chief Executive at The Sheffield Assay Office gives her testimonial as,

Helen as one of our trade guardians is incredibly hardworking, focused and dedicated.  She uses her industry contacts and business acumen to the benefit of the Assay Office and her high standards inspires us all.  Moreover, she is a delight to work with, fun, bubbly and enthusiastic, she lights up a room and engages with everyone.

Helen’s commitment to give back to the gems and jewellery industry has been evident. She believes in her approach to collaboration and trust oriented managerial methods. Her work puts emphasis on consumer awareness and protection. Her work as a Guardian at The Sheffield Assay Office has been commendable. There are various sectors in the industry. Being involved in a sector which protects the interest of consumers and providing her input on and overlooking training initiatives is a journey that she is extremely proud of.