Category: <span>Roofing</span>

Roofing industry seeing material prices rising

By Heidi J. Ellsworth, RCS Partner. 

Prices are expected to continue to rise through 2021. 

When the COVID-19 pandemic struck the U.S. in spring of 2020, the roofing industry had to adapt and adjust their business operations. As manufacturers were forced to slow or stop production and shipping became a challenge, contractors found it harder to get much-needed materials. Now, roofing companies are experiencing price increases for all types of building and roofing products.   

The lumber industry continues to see price increases and according to the National Home Builders Association, “Lumber prices increased 14.9% in August, marking the largest four-month gain since such data was first recorded in 1949 and the second-largest gain since seasonally adjusted data became available in 1975.” 

Shingle allocations and price increases have also been prevalent throughout 2020 due to high levels of storm-related re-roofing and limited raw materials. According to a roofing contractor’s website, “This week a roofing manufacturer put out a 4-6% price increase effective August 17 which follows two other shingle manufacturers with 2-7% increases and a fourth manufacturer following with their increase.” 

A key component used by most manufacturers is asphalt which is seeing its own price increases. According to Bud Polston of United Asphalts, there are widespread price increases with asphalt due to how it is processed. The demand for gasoline has been uneven in 2020 and jet fuel has seen a huge decrease in demand. According to Deloitte Insights, “Demand for gasoline has risen as more cars have returned to the road and as shops, retail stores and restaurants have reopened. However, demand for jet fuel has remained anemic, with U.S. demand still half of its pre–COVID-19 levels, as many people defer air travel.” 

The lack of demand for jet fuel has a trickledown effect on the amount and cost of producing/refining asphalt. According to information gained by United Asphalts from a refinery source, “Covid related lockdowns nationwide are impacting primarily gasoline and jet fuel (both lower demand and lower pricing). Most refineries cannot make asphalt and resid (oil products that remain after petroleum has been distilled) without also making gasoline and jet fuel and it appears that black oil production across the U.S. has decreased as a result. This is leading to higher market prices for resid and asphalt on account of the decreased production and to incentivize more production. Although the market price has increased, it is still not high enough to offset our incremental production costs of asphalt and resid.” 

This is not something that roofing manufacturers are pleased about but it is a fact that there will be price increases and roofing contractors should be aware. The Associated Builders and Contractors Chief Economist, Anirban Basu stated in a recent press release, “This dynamic (of building material price increases) is already observable, for example, in the prices of softwood lumber. As America’s single-family housing construction boom continues, many builders are ordering softwood lumber. With suppliers collectively lacking the near-term capacity to easily fill these orders, prices were spiking for much of 2020. Similar conditions may influence other commodities later this year as global growth accelerates. This means that contractors need to think long and hard about the existence and structure of escalation clauses as they negotiate future work.” 

In November and December of 2020, United Asphalts was hit with significant increases to the price of raw materials. They recently announced, “We are forced to increase our prices by an average of 10% in all markets for many reasons, including the ongoing ripple effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.” 

So, although many manufacturers must pass on price increases, they are more committed than ever to extreme customer service. “We are working with all of our customers for long-term forecasting our roofing asphalts so they can bid and complete jobs profitably,” stated Polston. 

And this is being found in the metal industry too. Roof Hugger recently announced, “As most of you are aware, several costs increase in steel have been announced in addition to some constriction in material availability. Roof Hugger, like many other fabricators, has found it necessary to pass along a portion of these material increases. We have done our best to minimize the increase and we are carefully monitoring our inventory levels.”  

They continue, “Please take note that with the uncertainty of steel costs, pricing will be good for a period of 14 days from the quote date and subject to review, thereafter, please qualify your proposals to reflect these limits. Roof Hugger is still committed to providing the best customer service and product quality as we have always been known.” 

Now more than ever a strong relationship with your manufacturers and distributors is essential. Good communication on upcoming material shortages, allocations or price increases is crucial to roofing contractor’s business.  

Roofing Technology Think Tank Announces 2020 Innovator of the Year

The award recognizes a roofing contractor who contributes to the advancement of the roofing industry.

York, Pennsylvania, December 8, 2020 –- Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3), a group of progressive roofing professionals focused on technology solutions for the roofing industry, awarded the 2020 Innovator of the Year award to Scott Riopelle, the owner and CEO of Denver, Colorado-based Interstate Roofing. The award was announced during the virtual 2020 Best of Success Conference.

“It’s clear that Scott is an early adopter and eager to integrate the latest technologies into Interstate Roofing,” stated Anna Anderson, CEO of Art Unlimited, Award Task Team Leader and RT3 Board Member. “To eliminate any chance of bias, our panel of judges did not know the names of the persons or companies that they were reviewing. They ranked nominations based solely on the technological information provided on the nomination form.”

According to the nomination, Scott was one of the first contractors to adopt using EagleView measurement reports as a standard in his business, as well as Xactimate and Scope Assist. “Technology is the new future in the roofing industry,” stated Scott. “By providing aerial and mobile access in seconds it is going to save time and be more cost effective for the jobs. I will never forget the first time I saw Xactimate. I was blown away by how far we have come in the last decade.”

Scott shared that Interstate Roofing has begun using virtual reality and augmented reality in their business. “This technology speaks to the new generation of contracting salespersons. It has increased our retention base by allowing multiple avenues of education, while providing another way to evaluate the skills of a contractor before we finalize a contractor agreement or put them in the field blindly. What this caused is a more loyal base of employee and contractor alike,” he explained.

He also is willing to share knowledge and help others in the industry, often presenting and educating other contractors, even competitors on how to implement technology into their businesses. “Due to the pandemic we have been forced to look at digital technology from a different perspective. I see the challenge and accept it as a good thing. It is not always about growing more jobs but defining the good jobs from the bad ones and keeping the crews safe,” he said.   

Interstate Roofing is a member of the Colorado Roofing Association, National Roofing Contractors Association and Scott serves on the board for the Western States Roofing Contractors Association. Interstate Roofing is rated in the highest tier with manufacturers such as Owens Corning, Versico, Boral Steel, GAF and CertainTeed.

Congratulations to Scott Riopelle and Interstate Roofing on being named the 2020 Innovator of the Year.

About Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3)
Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3) strives to find innovative technology solutions to be used within the roofing industry.  RT3 provides insights from progressive thought leaders both inside and outside the roofing industry along with practical resources for implementing potential solutions successfully. The organization will encourage and enable contractors to embrace technology as they seek to grow their businesses.  With a commitment to disseminate technology advancement information, RT3 will help build the professionalism and appeal of the roofing industry. Learn more at www.rt3thinktank.com.

RT3 Member Goes Pink for Breast Cancer Awareness

The BELDON®™ Group of Companies honors breast cancer victims who make houses into homes.

(SAN ANTONIO, TX – October 1, 2020) More than 200 home improvement team members are sporting pink safety vests, hard hats and lanyards for the month of October as The BELDON®™ Group of Companies introduces The BELDON® Cares Program to increase awareness of breast cancer and raise funding for research. As part of this, The BELDON® Cares Program is matching up to $5,000 in contributions to the Susan G. Komen Foundation made through www.Beldon.com.

“Unfortunately, many of us have been affected, or know someone who has been affected, by breast cancer,” said Brad Beldon, CEO of The BELDON®™ Group of Companies. “We are committed to helping find a cure for this awful disease.”

With this in mind, TEAM BELDON® is installing gutters, windows, insulation, roofing systems, and house siding while dressed in pink attire to show their support for people who have been affected by breast cancer.

“For generations, we have been proud to ensure that houses are comprised of long-lasting quality materials—but we know that it’s the people who live there that make each of these houses a home,” added Brad Beldon. “Through The BELDON® Cares Program, we are honored to support families who have been affected by breast cancer. We’re dedicated to increasing awareness and raising funds for research.”


About BELDON®

BELDON®, an award-winning family owned business founded in San Antonio, Texas, in 1946, specializes in the installation of products such as LeafGuard® gutters, Pella vinyl replacement windows, ProVia Doors, James Hardie siding, and residential and commercial roofing systems. For more information, visit BELDON.com

How technology can help you not visit a customer’s home until you have the down payment in hand

By Mike Davis, East Fork Roofing.

This roofing company in Reno, Nevada made the switch to this model three years ago with much success.

In Reno, Nevada, with a metro area population of 500,000 people, the grocery store shelves are empty. Is it the coronavirus that caused this? Or the fact that the stores’ supply chain is over the Sierra Mountains and it snowed 4 feet? Or both?

When asked by a colleague in the industry about what East Fork Roofing is doing to adjust to these unique times, the owner of East Fork Roofing, Mike Davis said they are doing very little differently. When asked why, he responded that since 2017, the company has been using a highly automated, fully satellite approach to their residential roof replacement business. His business rarely interacts with customers in-person and doesn’t visit a single home until down payment is received from the customer. Interested, the colleague inquired further how this is done.

Before Mike explained, he made sure to clarify his favorite part of this process: his company’s estimating costs have been reduced by more than 50%, which has allowed them to use the money they would have spent on estimating for advertising and recruiting – key components to strong growth.

Price-first quoting

He explained the key to make a satellite-based process work is a process called scenario-based quoting or price-first quoting.

Price-first quoting has its roots in the real estate and insurance industries. In real estate, the buyer agrees to a price after a very cursory visit to the property or with no visit at all. Only once a price and terms are agreed to, does any deep investigation begin. The reason this process is used in real estate is to reduce the cost of the process and increase the speed of the transaction. It makes sense when working with commission-only real estate agents that all the fluff be removed from the process.

Often in roofing, we do things that feel good but may be unnecessary: we spend time, money, and effort getting detail before negotiating price. We do this because it is expected by our customers, but expectations for how a business interacts with their customers is shifting, especially now.  When Mike joined East Fork Roofing and started estimating roofs in 2011, the process was: receive a phone call, schedule an appointment, visit the property to measure and assess risks, build the proposal, sell the job, then move on to the next. The work is front-loaded and inefficient, taking a significant amount of time driving from one location to another.  With price-first quoting, you move much of this time and effort to the back side of the sale. With a close ratio of 25-30%, this makes a huge difference in the cost of estimating. The new process is: receive a phone call, get measurements and risk data from satellite imaging, build the proposal, sell the job, collect down payment, investigate the job, adjust pricing as necessary, execute.

Scenarios

This new process introduces some new risks however: knowing how many layers there are, or if sheathing is needed. What about other risks that cause budget overruns? All these are what East Fork Roofing calls scenarios. The idea is simple. Give the customer a base price and explain that the final price is contingent on inspection and give them any scenarios you believe may apply. For example, a 25 square roof is $8,750 for one layer, $1,000 for each additional layer, $2,500 for sheathing. Done. This is something you can implement easily now. Just build these scenario lines with a price per square into your proposals as options. The goal is to build a list of scenarios for the customer to compare against the roofer who gives a flat price and identifies the scenarios that apply. When the customer selects your quote, bill and collect down payment and then send an inspector.

What other scenarios could be included? East Fork Roofing determines scenarios by doing root cause analysis and creating risk categories. When a job goes over budget, by determining how it went over budget and aligning that with a scenario, they can increase their price for that scenario instead of increasing their price for all projects. This leads to getting more of the work you want and pricing the job correctly for those more difficult jobs. Some examples of scenarios are: shake tear-offs, mobile homes, old homes, geographically based scenarios like elevation requirements, steepness of the roof, and differing prices based on permits/dump fees.  If a cost exists because of an identifiable reason that is not general, it can be considered a scenario.

Advantages and disadvantages

In a marketplace where you are the first one to implement something like this, you will have an advantage because you can afford to offer a reduced price and the other roofer goes out and investigates the roof for you and your customer. It also creates an advantage for the other roofer because there is an increased “perception” of higher customer service and that they have “earned” the work. Humans are emotional, so sometimes they will pick the other roofer because they created a higher value and earned price by visiting the property. With the current market situation surrounding coronavirus, the advantage to the other roofer is questionable. East Fork Roofing’s goal is to be priced in the middle of three quotes, not the lowest.

Another advantage is that instead of sending an estimator, you can send a foreman, who is typically in regular contact with the employees. This eliminates the challenges of an estimator proposing one thing to a customer and the field employees fighting with them about it because it’s not feasible. When the foreman or crew leader goes out, they do a very detailed inspection: outlining the dumpster approach, safety issues, applicable scenarios and identifying change requests. The foreman prepares a report complete with pictures. After review of the report by project management, a plan is made and the customer is informed via phone of all the findings.

This step drastically increases the value of the process because it is now affordable to do a detailed planning inspection. An estimator in a typical process can’t be this thorough because it would limit their volume of visits. In the old model, if you add this planning inspection step, you are adding to your unit cost. In this model, you combine the two inspections into one. East Fork Roofing has found that customers love this step because it is a chance for a deeper alignment of their expectations with company expectations and there is limited pressure to proceed if the conversation doesn’t go well. It’s truly win-win. Either party can leave the transaction at this point and a refund can be issued.

If you are going to require down payment before you visit the property, it is East Fork Roofing’s experience that you have to be willing and honorable in returning down payments if a customer does not like any change that you propose after the planning inspection. East Fork Roofing is still old fashion in its contract agreements. Although they have the capability to collect signatures electronically, they require no signatures on projects. If any customer wants to cancel a project, and very little money has been spent, East Fork Roofing will let the customer out of the contract and issue a full refund. Making this very clear on your proposals and having a good reputation is key to creating a safe environment for a customer to send a check in the thousands of dollars to someone they have never met in person. Google “East Fork Roofing Reno” to see their reviews.

Now that you have a basic grasp about how to reduce risks through scenario-based quoting, there are a few more tricks that need to be figured out as you go along. It took East Fork Roofing about six to nine months to work out the details in order to see a full return to previous close ratio. Each pivot will be different for each company but knowing the general idea of scenario-based pricing is the biggest step.

Technology and RT3

From here we will highlight the technology aspect. As a member of RT3, the Roofing Technology Think Tank, East Fork Roofing is driven to streamline the roofing process with forward-thinking technology use.

Due to complexities like steepness difficulty, which can change prices to sheathing, removal of roof, install of roof and additional layers, East Fork Roofing had a hard time streamlining the process of adding scenarios through standard, out-of-the-box software like AccuLynx or JobNimbus, etc.  Manually adjusting line item pricing due to scenario(s) on every proposal leaves room for human error and adds time to the process. Because of this, East Fork Roofing designed their own quoting system on an open-API platform that allows them to change the data with programming and to get data in and out, which most cloud software programs have.

The platform is a Citrix product called podio.com in combination with globiflow.com. Podio.com is a collaboration software, similar in purpose to Slack, but also has database features. The idea is that through Podio, any company can create items like a proposal in a central location, talk about it with their team via web browser or phone app and use globiflow.com to create highly advanced workflows that work with the data.

Workflows are key because they allow automation to happen. For example, one of the simplest flows East Fork Roofing has implemented is an automated phone call checking to make sure the customer received their proposal one day after the estimator marks the proposal sent. The system also sends an email at four days, and notifies the salesperson with a task to phone the customer at seven days.  Another feature in globiflow.com is their external link feature. When the email is sent with the proposal and four days later, it has a link that the customer can click to view a webpage with the available dates. East Fork Roofing uses this external link capability to offer a scheduling discount program, which displays three dates: a high priority date with a premium of typically 5-10% of the project price approximately two weeks out, a standard date three to six weeks out for no additional cost, and a discounted date six to12 weeks out with a discount of typically 4-6%. When a date is selected and confirmed, either through this webpage, or by the customer or sales associate if the customer calls in, a down payment invoice is sent via email to the customer automatically with no additional work for a billing administrator. Since Podio has an open-API, the invoice is also pushed to QuickBooks Online with no additional human effort.

This collaboration platform and workflow management allows East Fork Roofing to simplify the process of building and tracking scenarios and creating quotes. It is now as simple as three forms/items in Podio: one about the customer captured by a call taker, one about measurements captured through Roofsnap.com by an estimator, and one about risk data/scenarios created by an estimator. Once this data is entered, the workflows build the proposal. Currently they have a data entry person entering all the data, and a junior estimator double checking the proposal; this means the project manager/estimator is now only used to approve complicated proposals over a set dollar limit.

East Fork Roofing has built the workflow out for every step of the project: billing, planning inspection, permitting, daily job reporting with photos, scheduling, dumpster management, employee pay entries and timesheets, quality inspections and vendor warranty registration. Throughout the process, the workflows are sending emails with pictures to help customers stay informed without having to call the office for information. The workflows take the customer from initial phone call to cash.

Currently, the only channels of communication available are email and phone with limited SMS. In the works is a Twilio (SMS/Whatsapp/Facebook messenger) integration that will allow a customer to interact with East Fork Roofing throughout the project via any of those channels. Some additional channels East Fork Roofing is looking to add is voice (Alexa, Siri, Google assistant), with plans to implement these into their process over the next few years. Think how innovative it will be when a customer says to their phone or TV, “What is the status of my roofing project?” and it will respond back to you not only with an audio update, but with pictures.

In summary, East Fork Roofing has not changed much with the recent changes due to COVID-19 because they were already a virtual company. However, they are focused on the next technological breakthrough. Now that you have a better idea of one method of implementing roof replacement proposals with reduced risks and of some future ideas, what changes will you implement? What can you do to improve in this regard? East Fork Roofing suggests to request things like this from your existing platforms, subscribing to RT3 Smart Brief, and reading up on technology here at Rooferscoffeeshop.com.

Source: RoofersCoffeeShop.

Roofing Technology Think Tank Announces Election of Two New Board Members

The board supports the RT3 mission and leads the organization in its efforts to educate and advance technology in the roofing industry.

Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3), a group of progressive roofing professionals focused on technology solutions for the roofing industry, elected Brad Beldon, Beldon Roofing, San Antonio, Texas and Wendy Marvin, Matrix Home Solutions, Vancouver, Washington to fill two openings on the board of directors.

“We are very excited to welcome Brad and Wendy to the board,” said Karen Edwards, RT3 director of communications and engagement. “They are both believers in the power of technology for the roofing industry and will be instrumental in helping RT3 continue to be the voice of technology in the roofing industry.”

RT3 would also like to extend its gratitude to Steve Little, Head Coach at KPost Roofing and Waterproofing and Ken Kelly, President of Kelly Roofing for their contribution as founding board members of the organization. “Their leadership and passion for the roofing industry has helped RT3 thrive and enabled the group to provide important education and information to the industry in the form of panels at events, webinars and articles,” noted Edwards.

Other board members include:

  • Anna Anderson, CEO of Art Unlimited
  • Heidi Ellsworth, Owner HJE Consulting and partner in RoofersCoffeeShop®
  • Ryan Groth, President of Sales Transformation Group
  • Tom Whitaker, President of Harness Software

The think tank meets six times a year, four virtual and two live with a focus on learning about new and emerging technologies. Past live meetings have been held at innovative locations that help educate the group on progressive technologies that can make a difference in the roofing industry, including 3M Innovation Center and Roofing Granule Lab, OMG Roofing Products, Vanderbilt Wond’ry, Microsoft Innovation Lab, Georgia Tech, BuiltWorlds and the U.S. Capitol. The next live meetup is planned for Sika Sarnafil.

Stay up to date with RT3 news and events by signing up for the RT3 SmartBrief newsletter at www.rt3thinktank.com.

About Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3)
Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3) strives to find innovative technology solutions to be used within the roofing industry. RT3 provides insights from progressive thought leaders both inside and outside the roofing industry along with practical resources for implementing potential solutions successfully. The organization will encourage and enable contractors to embrace technology as they seek to grow their businesses. With a commitment to disseminate technology advancement information, RT3 will help build the professionalism and appeal of the roofing industry. Learn more at www.rt3thinktank.com.

 

Roofing Technology Think Tank Seeks Nominations for 2020 Innovator of the Year Award

The award recognizes a roofing contractor who has demonstrated a commitment to technology and the advancement of the roofing industry.

Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3), a group of progressive roofing professionals focused on technology solutions for the roofing industry, announced that it has opened the nomination period for the 2020 Innovator of the Year Award.

This award was created to nationally recognize a roofing contractor that has contributed to the advancement of the roofing industry through technical innovation and/or product development in one of the following areas:

  • Production/Technology Efficiency
  • Safety Innovation
  • Client Service/Quality of Delivery
  • Employee Recruitment/Training/Retention
  • Environmental Impact

Award judging criteria will be based on innovation, results, design and strategy. The 2019 winner was Curtis Sutton of Carthage, Tennessee-based Rackley Roofing, a company that counts innovation as one of its six core values.

The 2020 recipient will be announced this fall at the Best of Success conference. To be eligible, a roofing contractor must be licensed and bonded for a minimum of five years and have a minimum $5 million in annual revenue. They also must be a member of a professional industry association and be able to cite community enrichment ties through support of non-profits or company culture programs.

For more information and to submit an award application visit www.rt3thinktank.com/innovator-award. There is a $50 nomination fee to cover processing and award costs.  The nomination period closes July 31, 2020.

About Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3)
Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3) strives to find innovative technology solutions to be used within the roofing industry. RT3 provides insights from progressive thought leaders both inside and outside the roofing industry along with practical resources for implementing potential solutions successfully. The organization will encourage and enable contractors to embrace technology as they seek to grow their businesses. With a commitment to disseminate technology advancement information, RT3 will help build the professionalism and appeal of the roofing industry.

Roofing Technology Think Tank Launches New Community

The RT3 Community will allow more members of the roofing industry to engage with RT3 members.

May 18, 2020 –- Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3), a group of progressive roofing professionals focused on technology solutions for the roofing industry, announced the creation of a new, non-voting membership called the RT3 Community.

“In more traditional times, RT3 members were able to share knowledge and information with the industry at conferences and tradeshows but we have had to adapt in order to be safe,” said Karen Edwards, RT3 director of communications and engagement. “When the pandemic began here, we launched a series of educational webinars and were blown away by the level of participation. It became obvious that we needed to find a way to continue to engage with the industry.”

The organization developed the RT3 Community membership that allows members the opportunity to join a special Slack channel with RT3 members, attend the RT3 virtual meetups and Tech Talks, be invited to RT3 popup networking groups at industry events, access the RT3 Technology Innovators Facebook group, participate in the RT3 Technology Forum on RoofersCoffeeShop® and receive the SmartBrief e-newsletter featuring progressive industry content.

The RT3 Community membership is open to anyone in the roofing industry, without needing to apply and receive approval from the membership task team. “It is our hope that opening this community to everyone will continue to advance the understanding and implementation of technology into the roofing industry,” said Edwards.

Full voting individual and corporate memberships remain capped at 100 members maximum in order for RT3 to continue to be agile and maximize the learning opportunities for the rest of the industry. “When full membership spots become available, the RT3 Community is the perfect feeder system to fill those seats with engaged, passionate new members,” concluded Edwards.

Join the RT3 Community by visiting www.rt3thinktank.com and choosing ‘Join now.

About Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3)
Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3) strives to find innovative technology solutions to be used within the roofing industry. RT3 provides insights from progressive thought leaders both inside and outside the roofing industry along with practical resources for implementing potential solutions successfully. The organization will encourage and enable contractors to embrace technology as they seek to grow their businesses. With a commitment to disseminate technology advancement information, RT3 will help build the professionalism and appeal of the roofing industry. Learn more at www.rt3thinktank.com.

RT3 Special Webinar #3: This Week’s Buzz – Legal Updates, Connecting to Community & Special Message from NRCA Chairman of the Board Nick Sabino

 

Legal Expert: Trent Cotney, Cotney Construction Law

  • What’s the latest from a legal perspective and what should contractors be doing to protect themselves?

Manufacturing Expert: Josh Kelly, OMG Roofing Products

  • A roofing industry manufacturer’s perspective and update

Residential/Commercial Roofing Expert: Brad Beldon, Beldon Roofing.

  • Keeping everyone informed and social distancing as a contractor

Philanthropic Expert: Charles Antis, Antis Roofing

  • Contractors supporting their community
  • Leadership in crisis

Special Guest: Nick Sabino, Deer Park Roofing and NRCA Chairman of the Board

  • How NRCA is helping contractors
  • Industry update

 

Responding to COVID-19 // Navigating Construction & Service Sales

By Ryan Groth, Sales Transformation Group.

As a Sales Consultant, Coach, Trainer and Leader in the Trade Construction and Service industry, it is my obligation to share my thoughts on the pandemic that we are seeing rapidly unfold in March 2020. I’m writing this so that my clients and our industry will come together to take the necessary actions to navigate what is certainly uncharted territory. There’s a clear medical affect that we are seeing impact our communities and small businesses, but what will impact our lives and businesses even more is the economic ripple effect.  Who knows how long this will last? We don’t know the answers, there are too many unknowns. However, we have seen economic depressions before, and we can take the right actions.

My construction business mentor Gregg Wallick told me once that the economy is cyclical. We struggled in 2008-2009 and changed our business radically to avoid suffering the next time there is one, and there will be another. I believe that the Coronavirus pandemic will force this next depression into reality, and we need to be ready and make sure we survive it. Gregg began moving out of the bid-world and focused on building a service and sales organization, which is much more of a recession-proof business model than new construction. He started Sales Training in 2008 and hasn’t stopped since. He’s seen this movie before. I learned why and how he did this, which birthed my desire to start Sales Transformation Group – so the construction industry can have the skills, the focus and strategies to survive and thrive. I’m writing this so that your businesses won’t die, but you will make it. Don’t be afraid, we will make it!

 

Here’s what you can do:

  • The Coronavirus will impact your customers’ confidence of having your team members step on property, so record your “COVID-19 Hands-free Process” from “contact to close-out”. People will always need to fix leaks.
  • Record this “process” in a scrappy way – put in on your website, post on social and email broadcast. Communicate. Communicate. Communicate.
  • Send an email to your staff and stakeholders. People need your leadership right now.
  • Allow your staff to work remotely. Require an end of day scorecard and 7-minute morning huddle via Zoom.
  • Take pre-cautions medically. Social distancing, gloves, protection, etc. I’m no expert here so please find a reliable resource.
  • Keep Marketing. Keep Selling!

What’s the best way to sell now?

  • Set up 15-minute discovery calls, 30-minute Project Consults via Zoom meeting (have prospects download the app). Zoom is free up to 40 minutes.
  • Stick with the sales process! Don’t skip the steps because you’re anxious. This will allow you to differentiate.
  • Use technology to perform a digital, virtual, hands-free inspection, take-off and estimate.
  • Present via Zoom by appointment. Don’t email your quotes and don’t be a human panic button.

Who should you sell to?

  • I’ve said this time and again because of my construction business mentor Gregg Wallick of Best Roofing…noninsurance and non-new construction work keeps you surviving through economic storms.
  • Relationships with owners and managers of old commercial and residential buildings will help you survive.
  • New builds will dry up. Focus on creating a great customer experience with repairs, restoration, replacement and retrofitting projects.

How do you find them?

  • Scrub your outstanding pipeline. TODAY.
  • Communicate and protect your existing clients. People will be trying to get them now…trust me the competition will be scrambling. Ask for introductions, “who do you know?”
  • Certain buildings are vacant, leverage this time to complete jobs (restaurants, schools, sports facilities).
  • Reonomy is a database you can subscribe to help locate contact information of building owners.
  • Prospect – LinkedIn. Facebook Groups. Next-Door App. Advertise in your local market

What message should you send them?

  • Use “Vidyard”, “Loom” or “Icecream” to capture short screen recordings. You can Google Earth a video of the building.
  • Send Linkedin Messages of the screen recordings with an identified problem and demonstration of the problem. Video messages of your face is also different than the rest.
  • Share that you have a “hands-free process to remedy the problem from contact to close-out”

In closing:

  • Don’t be afraid. This is an opportunity.
  • Stick with servicing old, existing buildings.
  • Share your mapped out “Virtual, digital, COVID-19 Safe, Contact-Free Process”
  • Communicate. Market. Sell. Sell. Sell. Require all sales staff to prospect digitally in 1-2-hour blocks in the conference room or remotely.
  • Get ready to endure a medical and economic storm, have courage.
  • Stick with training and coaching. We are here for you; this is a time to get better and pivot. 

 

If you’re not a member of the Sales Transformation Group community yet with access to my company Sales Accelerator Program and want to become a resilient sales organization to propel you into the private sector of your market, taking the right action and getting the right coaching so that you can weather this upcoming storm, visit: https://training.salestransformationgroup.com/quiz to apply.

 

Let’s band together and make it!

To your success,

Ryan Groth

Founder, Sales Transformation Group, Inc.