This month marks a big milestone in our calendar: we are celebrating our 10-year anniversary, following a decade of success and growth.
Optima was founded by Managing Director, Chris Lamb, in September 2012. He set out with a goal to create a company which offered in-depth technical expertise with broader systems thinking to scope and solve complex problems. The business now has over 195 client engagements, and a client base across government departments, major industrial prime contractors, and specialist technical consultancies in the Defence, Nuclear, Aerospace, Transport and Utilities sectors.
Chris discusses the origins of the business and its continued growth, “Optima was founded to help clients with their challenges in complex systems development. Whilst the early days took a leap of faith, I always knew what type of business we needed to build for it to succeed and thrive in what was already a difficult market. Critical to this was having the right team to share the journey, with an ethos about strong delivery for our clients, and an internal culture based on openness, respect, and support.”
Optima, now a business of 30 employees, and 15 associates, has seen repeated growth year-on-year, and hit £4.6m in turnover in 2022. With the business expanding and work increasing, creating a team and culture where all those involved can flourish has been key to the success of the business. “I am delighted that so many talented people share the view about the importance of client service and culture, and have become my colleagues here. They are what make it a truly special place to work.
“I believe part of that comes from both the level of experience in the team and the thirst for growing knowledge, sharing best practice, and developing careers throughout the organisation.”
With ten years past, Optima is now looking to the future and is determined to leave a legacy behind it, working closer with the local community in the Southwest and to inspire the next generation to take roles in STEM. “We have always been a business which has looked to work with our wider society, and over the next ten years we will continue to put something back through our involvement with professional bodies, charities, STEM and more besides. We think this is critical in creating a business and a rich professional home for our people.
“We also continue to drive inclusion and diversity in the workforce and the wider profession. In the last couple of years Optima hosted and sponsored two EDI events for INCOSE UK members and we don’t stop there, we will continue to play our part to inspire and position young people from diverse backgrounds into systems engineering and related professions.”
Moving forward, Optima will continue to place client service, its people, and its culture at the heart of its operation, an approach which has seen it become one of the leading systems consultancies in the UK.
Chris continues, “We would like to thank all of you who have supported us over the last ten years. Whilst I am incredibly proud of how far we’ve come since 2012, I’m certain the next ten years will be just as exciting, challenging and rewarding. I look forward to sharing that journey with our team and those who join us along the way.”
Find out more about our journey, key facts about us and our ambitions for the future on this link.