Covid 19, Coronavirus and the Impact on the Technology and Data Cabling Industry. A Truthful Assessment of What’s Coming
The impact of the coronavirus on the world as a whole, as we have all seen, has been massive and a large proportion of industries will be affected; technology and data cabling will be no different.
Many of our clients have been asking us what effect this means on currently planned in work and upcoming proposed projects.
Below is our honest opinion on how this will affect the data cabling industry and where it can be incorporated into your companies industry.
The coronavirus Impact on Installations, Essential Works and Safety
The complications with the current coronavirus is that no one knows how long it will continue, when work can return back to normal or even a small resemblance on what was previously normal.
Companies are concerned that having installers in their offices during these times risk exposure and spread of the virus and as a company we wholeheartedly agree that for the world as a whole we need to practice social distancing, and this starts with the eliminating or reduction of installations where exposure to other employees, trades or workers is non manageable.
This then leads on to what’s essential and therefore able to be scheduled.
Each company’s definition of essential will vary based on requirements, the infrastructure of the business and the overall impact that the delay in those structured cabling works will have on the operation of that business.
As a company we have seen essential works having to be completed for UK essential businesses such as Royal Mail, Banking and Finance where installation that were mid project were required to be completed unless the overall operation of those deliveries would be affected.
However, in a contrasting manner we have seen many projects be delayed or cancelled due to the lack of essential requirements. Projects have also been rescheduled where health and safety can’t be guaranteed for the end client or the installation companies involved.
The coronavirus impact on Surveys, Meetings and Quotations
The biggest impact on the industry so far has been the reduction and almost elimination of meetings, surveys and the knock on affect to quotations and proposals for data cabling.
With many staff now working from home there is now a lack of presence within all the companies and buildings that would be arranging data cabling installation surveys or design meetings.
(Especially in the London area where public transport is massively reduced and seen as a medium to avoid where possible.)
The effect on the industry is: Reduced surveys leads to reduced structured cabling quotations and reduced installation projects.
The effect overall is a positive for battling the virus as each reduced element increases the social distancing.
Opportunities, Smarter Working and Solutions
This period of upheaval will pass although no one knows how long and how definitive that timescale will be. Once the initial rise starts to flatten and more is known on how to manage the virus, the distancing and how people will start to return to work then focus will return to how all those projects that have been delayed can start to put into place.
This will apply for all industries, not only the technology and data cabling industry.
The opportunity here is to plan in advance and undertake those surveys, processed the quotations and schedule the works in anticipation of the return to a somewhat normal working week.
As a company we are undertaking increased surveys offsite with a detailed almost interview like discussion over the telephone or video conferencing. In those situations where employees are still based within their offices, photos, videos and live streams are being used to survey these works and enabling detailed and accurate quotations to be supplied.
Also, where quotations are accepted and works agreed on as essential and safe to install, engineers are able to attend almost empty buildings and undertake these works in a safer manner than was ever possible.
Not only are the social distancing elements upheld but a larger proportion of health and safety measures are now massively minimised or eliminated. Health and Safety concerns such as removing false floors in an active office, working on ladders around employees and especially noise pollution within an office or heard in other company offices.
Is the upcoming period going to be difficult and an upheaval? The answer of course will be based on what your company does and how the virus plays out.
However what we do know is at this time we have more technology and ways of filling voids than we have ever had before and these can be used to bring an element of normality back to the survey, quotation and installation process within the data cabling industry.
So while others stand still waiting to see what happens, allow us to use these opportunities to actually increase the effectiveness and completion times of those important projects and leave the rest of the precious time to getting back to normal within your business.
for an article of how an office can be re-structured for social distancing please see our additional article HERE