The coronavirus has captured global attention. It has also affected various industries and it has not spared the plumbing industry. With the ongoing developments of the pandemic, it’s crucial for businesses to prepare and plan to come out strong both during and after the crisis. The time you spend planning today will help your plumbing business stay afloat amid the pandemic and the seasons ahead.
Here are ways coronavirus could affect the plumbing industry and some risk management tips:
1. Supply chain
A slight disruption in the availability of plumbing parts and fixtures has been observed. Materials coming from Asia and Italy are with the enforcement of quarantine measures. The term “limited availability” is being thrown around often in supply houses.
The extent of the supply concern depends on the duration and the degree of quarantine measures implemented in different countries. Although this is considered a moderate level of concern, it isn’t affecting the supply chains related to critical operations. Contact your supply dealer and talk to them regarding any concerns you might encounter in the future. It will also help to manage your customers’ expectations and warn them about possible delays.
Your operations might get paralyzed when one or two of your plumbers can’t come to work. However, it’s better to be shorthanded than to shut down operations entirely.
If one of your employees isn’t feeling well, let them take time off. Symptomatic workers or those who exhibit obvious symptoms of COVID-19 (like fever, dry cough, and shortness of breath) must be sent home immediately. Advise them to get tested as soon as possible. Normalize the use of sanitizers, gloves, and other personal protective equipment (PPE) within the company premises as well as when going on-field.
Businesses like restaurants and public event venues are among those that are greatly affected since people are staying indoors. The majority of workplaces have shifted to Work From Home operations as well. This may result in a demand for more residential jobs than commercial ones.
If you’re situated in an area where a vast majority of people are working from home, leverage your social media accounts. Inform consumers that you’re open and available for plumbing jobs. Residents may need someone to take care of maintenance and low-priority plumbing tasks while they stay at home.
Steer clear from making jokes related to the virus. Remind your employees to take every customer concern seriously like they would on a normal day. You never know how the pandemic is affecting everyone. Consider offering “touch-free” upgrades to homeowners who are worried about germs.
Preparedness during this crisis requires a solid understanding of the risks it poses on your business and the foresight to put effective plans in place. Put your plan (i.e. business continuity plan) on paper and educate your team about it.