Changes Are Ahead. Are You Ready?
I hope this finds you well. Big changes are afoot in our industry. Are you prepared for them? In this issue of the Executive Report, we will take a look at some of those changes. Because I firmly believe that construction and home renovation will look very different in 10 and 15 years from how it looks today, how we prepare and live into those changes now will determine our future success.
Before I start digging into things too deeply, I want to tell you about another opportunity you have to help you prepare for the future and that is to attend the Metal Roofing Summit. Even though “Metal Roofing” is in the name, if you’re in any segment of residential remodeling, this conference will send you home with your head full of ideas for continued success.
The Summit will be held near Dayton, Ohio on April 15 – 17 with optional metal roofing installation overview on April 18. We have capped registration at 150 and, after just one week of open registration, we are half-way there. So, you need to register soon or miss out on this great three days of networking with other industry professionals, connecting with vendors who can help you in your business, and attending presentations on sales, marketing, leadership, lead management, and much more! There is no cost to attend but you must register now to ensure your place!
So, let’s look at some of the changes that will impact your business in coming years, and how you can prepare for them. As you will see, a lot of the coming changes revolve around the increasing and expected continuation of a labor shortage in the construction industry.
Huge dollars are currently being poured into Construction Automation. As an answer to the fact that it’s harder and harder to hire workers for outdoor construction projects, these companies are moving construction indoors. Through technology, their work is customizable and scalable. Companies like Katerra are even figuring out ways to bring their practices and technology to renovation, not just new builds. Competing with these companies, and figuring out ways to learn from them, will be a part of the successful remodeling contractor’s future.
The concept of construction materials that are long-lasting and good for the environment is not new. However, what’s new is that, increasingly, Sustainability impacts the homeowner’s checkbook. In this world of spiraling direct labor costs, installing products that will not need to be replaced every 10 – 20 years has a huge financial impact on consumers. As does energy efficiency!
Homes in Europe do not look like North American homes. Starting on the west coast and in Canada, we are seeing a fast trend toward more contemporary and European home designs and styles. More straight lines and linear looks, either single or multi-story. Lower slope roofs. Contemporary, clean interiors. Fueled by HGTV, homeowners are demanding progressive styles and looks for their new homes and their remodeling projects.
Amazon has created a consumer mindset that “I can have whatever I want, and I can have it in two days with free shipping!” Going back to Burger King and “Hold the pickle, hold the lettuce, special orders don’t upset us,” homeowners are envisioning exactly what they want their homes to look and function like. This impacts the remodeling industry by more time being spent on the “design phase” of even simple projects, and by customers expecting to be able to get everything “custom”. One-off custom color roofs are even now available from Isaiah Industries!
Social Media and Reviews
Not particularly new these days but ever-increasing in terms of cruciality, if you’re not active on social media and growing a great collection of online reviews, you will be overlooked by consumers. How can they expect you to be there for them in the future if you’re not even up-to-date today?? And the same thing goes for Video – you must be utilizing quality video with your online presence.
Be prepared for this one – consumers are often not only too busy to have a salesperson come to their home, they view the “Amazon Effect” as making it unnecessary. They can get all the education they need online. Yes, we teach how to overcome the consumer who says “Just email me a quote” but here’s the reality – someday, perhaps very soon, a contractor in your area is going to figure out how to effectively offer the “no sales call” remodeling project and, the homeowners who want that will connect directly with that contractor – you will never get the opportunity to even have a shot at them. It may sound like heresy to you, but at Isaiah Industries, we’re working now to bring an “online sales program” to metal roofing contractors because that is where the future lies for many consumers.
We’re going to soon see other states follow California with a mandate for solar on new construction. Solar is now a “status symbol” for homeowners, and they even take pride in the beauty and simplicity of their solar systems. In future years, homes that do not have solar will even become difficult to sell. It’s time to face it, if you’re in the home remodeling business, you’re also in the energy business – either helping customers save or harness energy. On the roofing side, we’re working on an integrated solar system that would be used in place of a portion of a home’s metal roof, helping to offset the cost considerably and bringing the homeowners a very economical solar option.
Changes … they are inevitable and the speed of change is always increasing. Give me a call at 1-800-543-8938 ext 201 or drop me an email and let’s talk about how to prepare your company for the future! And, be sure to register today for an event that’s all about the future – the 2019 Metal Roofing Summit.
Todd Miller has spent his entire career in the metal building products manufacturing industry. He is president of Isaiah Industries, an organization recognized as one of the world’s leading metal roofing manufacturers. Todd is currently Vice President of the MRA (Metal Roofing Association) and a Past Chair of MCA (Metal Construction Association). Through his website, he strives to raise the bar on standards and practices to provide property owners with the best possible products for successful roofing projects.
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