As you and your roofing business navigate the challenges brought about by coronavirus, you probably have a lot of questions. After all, no one has experienced anything like this before. It’s difficult to find information about how to manage your business during this time, especially when everyone else is busy dealing with the same challenges.
We can’t answer all your questions—But we have been talking to many roofers and industry experts around the country, and we’ve heard some ways they’re navigating the same challenges you’re facing. Here are a few common questions that roofers are asking right now—and our answers.
How do I make sure I’m following local and national regulations?
You want to make sure you’re following the best guidelines for your city and state, and keeping your business safe and compliant. But guidance and regulations are changing frequently—sometimes daily—and rumors swirl around best practices for safety and virus prevention, making it difficult to find accurate, helpful information that can guide your decisions. How do you make sure you’re following these regulations?
The best place to start when it comes to compliance is your local government’s website, which likely has a page full of up-to-date information about COVID-19. Checking this page as often as you can—at least once a day—will help you make sure you’ve got the most current, accurate information about what your business needs to do. In addition, the National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA) has a page on their website compiling resources for roofers from OSHA, the CDC, and more. With this information, you’ll be able to answer pressing questions about how to keep your employees safe, what the law requires of employers, and which government benefits apply to your business.
My customers want me to reduce my visits to their homes. How?
Many normal work patterns are being disrupted due to coronavirus. As a roofer, you’re likely used to a certain number of visits to the job site being necessary for work to be completed. It’s hard to change this pattern, especially if it’s well-established. But now your customers are asking for reduced contact and wondering if there’s any way for your crews to complete repairs without spending so much time at their home. You want to honor these requests, but it feels like every visit you make to the job site is already essential. How can you reduce your contact with the homeowner?
Start by taking a look at the tasks involved in completing the job and identify ways you could streamline those tasks to involve fewer site visits. For instance, do you typically meet with the homeowner to give job updates? You could consider giving those updates by video or phone call instead of delivering them in person. By looking at the job process step by step, it’ll be easier for you to identify where you can make changes.
One important way to keep your job site visits to a minimum is to help your crews stay on task. With accurate, efficient work by your crews, the job will be completed more quickly and fewer visits will be needed to complete it. AccuLynx offers a mobile Crew App that helps you keep track of what your crews are doing and manage your jobs. In the mobile Crew App, you can create checklists and provide detailed instructions for your crews. As crews complete items on these lists, they can check them off, giving you a view into what has been done and what still needs to be done. By providing these details to your crews, you can keep them focused on what’s important and help them complete tasks more quickly. Using the mobile Crew App will give you the much-needed efficiency that will help reduce time spent on the job.
How can I find storm damage without visiting homeowners in person?
Hailstorms and other weather events are still happening, even during a pandemic. Roofing contractors in the insurance restoration business have new opportunities to reach homeowners as storms hit their areas. But many insurance restoration salespeople are used to scoping out damage in person and meeting with homeowners directly. Is there still a way to find insurance restoration leads without visiting homes?
Using a weather map, like those provided by HailWatch or CoreLogic Hail Maps, can help you find where storm damage has occurred from the comfort of your home. Ordering these maps is a great place to start when it comes to finding homeowners who might need your services. AccuLynx allows you to order these hail maps directly within the software platform, so you can easily connect the hail data with the rest of your system. Once you have this information, you can reach out to potential leads through locally targeted ads, phone calls, or emails. You could even create messaging for your website and social media that encourages homeowners who have experienced storm damage to contact your business. Although it’s not the same as finding storm damage by driving through a neighborhood, insurance restoration contractors can still target homeowners who need their services remotely.
How can I make my paperwork paperless and touch-free?
Customers are understandably reluctant to review estimates and sign contracts in person. But many roofers are still using pen and paper, either exclusively or primarily, for estimates, contracts, lien orders and other documents. Becoming a paperless business seems overwhelming. How can you create documents digitally? And can you really get a legal signature electronically?
AccuLynx offers several tools to help roofers manage their documents digitally. Our software allows you to create digital templates for your estimates, contracts, and other frequently used documents. These digital templates are stored in AccuLynx for use anytime. You can create templates for different types of jobs, as well as different types of documents. Once it’s time to put together an estimate or contract, it’s easy to select the template you want and input customer information. Our SmartDocs feature even allows you to automatically populate these templates with information, saving you even more time. These electronic documents are fully customizable with your logo, header, and other company information, and can be emailed directly to your customers so they can review it themselves.
AccuLynx also offers an eSign feature to capture signatures electronically. With eSign, you don’t have to visit the customer’s house to get approval—they can sign a contract or other document themselves on their computer or tablet. And these electronic signatures are legally binding and secure, so your business is protected and your contracts are valid. Offering electronic signatures and sending documents over email protects you and your customers, reduces the amount of in-person contact necessary to move a job forward, and even saves your business time.
What kind of messaging do homeowners want to hear right now?
You’ve got your sales pitch down pat. You’ve been talking to homeowners for years, so you understand their typical needs and challenges. But this is an unprecedented situation, and you’re not sure how to talk to homeowners at this time. What kind of messaging tactics should a roofing company take?
The best thing to do right now when it comes to connecting with homeowners is to listen. Make sure you understand what their needs, questions, and concerns are. Then do your best to address them and communicate how your roofing business will deal with those concerns. When homeowners understand that you want to work with them to meet their needs, it will put them at ease and help them to feel more confident about working with you.
Homeowners, like all of us, are experiencing a lot of uncertainty right now. They will be more likely to work with you if you can show them you are stable, reliable, and understand their needs. In messaging like ads and website content, take care to mention that you’re willing to be flexible to homeowner needs, communicate the precautions you’re taking during this pandemic, and encourage homeowners to call you with any questions. If possible, include testimonials from former customers that emphasize your reliability and stability. This type of messaging will help reinforce that your roofing business is the right choice for homeowners who need repairs during this time.
As the roofing industry continues to deal with the effects of coronavirus, more and more questions arise. Armed with a few answers, contractors can continue to work efficiently, stay positive, and find innovative solutions to their challenges.