How has the industry adapted to the digital revolution?

The UK’s digital transformation began decades ago – but while it’s radically changed many industries, the construction sector has been slow to adapt.

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According to Tech Nation’s 2020 report, technology is expanding six times faster than the rest of the UK economy. Yet in the construction industry, where paper-based transactions and manual processes persist, businesses have been slow to implement digitisation strategies that could bring improved efficiency and output as well as reduced costs and increased revenue.

Since it began, the industry has favoured face to face meetings, door to door sales and events as its primary way of building relationships and landing new business. However, COVID–19 has, for the time being at least, turned that all on its head.

Homeowners are no longer visiting showrooms, warehouses and factories have closed, and salespeople are using virtual meetings to maintain and build relationships. Of course, some companies will have invested extensively in digital infrastructure across marketing, processes, manufacturing and more long before the current crisis – and those businesses will be in a much better position to weather this pandemic, both in the short and long term.

But what about the companies who’ve now been suddenly thrust into the digital era by COVID-19?

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By now, if staff haven’t been furloughed, they’ll be working from home – and for many, it will have been a very abrupt entrance into the world of remote working, creating issues around skillset, trust, culture, management, and output.

What was once a ‘nice to have’ has now become a necessity for businesses to keep moving. Overnight, companies had to adapt in a multitude of ways. Priorities shifted. Workloads changed. Budgets were realigned.

But it’s important to remember that digital adoption was never meant to be applied all in one go. It’s supposed to be an ongoing process, that affects not just systems and technology, but culture and people. Even small steps businesses make towards digitisation now could prevent difficulties further down the road, as well as improving their competitiveness in the longer run.

Taking the time to research and access information on how you can improve your digital processes will, in the future, be invaluable. Look at the available digital marketing tools that can help you connect with customers wherever they are, technology that will ensure your business can adapt to the long-term impacts of COVID-19, and anything else that will give your team the support they need to exceed customer expectations.

But regardless of whether your business is well ahead of the curve, or you’re just at the start of your journey, the current crisis is likely to be a catalyst for further digital transformation, and fundamentally change how companies in fenestration and construction operate.

We want to hear from you

At Insight Data, we’re keen to hear how you and your team have been adopting to working digitally under lockdown. We’ve created a series of polls to gauge how the industry’s coping, and we’d be delighted if you’d take part. If you’d like to participate, or would just like to stay in touch, please follow our LinkedIn and Twitter pages.

For a FREE demo of Salestracker, or further information on our services, then call Insight Data on 01934 808293, or email at hello@insightdata.co.uk..