5 reasons why accreditation is good for your construction business
According to recent figures, the construction industry is worth £21.5bn to Scotland’s GDP and employs 170,000 people.
In simpler terms, the construction sector underpins the whole Scottish economy, employing about 10% of the overall Scottish workforce.
Experts agree that the two areas in the industry that are expected to grow over the next five years are: public & private housing, and repair & maintenance of existing buildings.
With jobs for skilled plumbers, construction trade supervisors, wood trades, civil engineers, and non-construction professional, technical and IT staff likely to be in most demand, Louise Percy, Director of Positive About Business, identifies 5 key benefits that gaining construction accreditation will have on your business.
1. Builds confidence and trust
As an accredited member of schemes like Constructionline and Achilles, you submit your business to regular assessment and testing to ensure that you continually meet a minimum standard or attainment.
The rules are strict in the accreditation arena, and only members that have achieved a 100% pass rate can us the quality mark/logo on their business stationery and marketing materials.
To your customers and suppliers (if you’re marketing your business correctly!), your business becomes instantly recognisable as having gained a certain level of expertise and specialism within the industry.
To your customers, suppliers, employees and contractors, the completion of the accreditation process demonstrates not only that your procedures and methods comply with UK and European standards, but also that you are fully committed to achieving, and adhering to, industry-recognised standards in areas such as health & safety, quality, environmental protection, training & qualifications, and so on.
In these ways, accreditation is building vital confidence and trust in your business by providing tangible evidence that you will deliver the levels of quality and safety that consumer and commercial clients expect.
2. Cut costs, increase profits
Accreditation in the construction industry – put simply: it makes good business sense. Accreditation can sometimes reduce liability insurance and other professional services costs as some schemes offer free advice on practical issues such as legal and HR. Depending on the size of your business, this could be a saving of thousands of pounds.
If you consistently apply the accreditation standards, renew your application year after year, and market your business well, you should profit from continually growing the business.
Potential customers will take note of your accreditations and use them as a benchmark in their decision-making on whether to hire you or not.
If you’re part of a larger supply chain, accreditation can reduce costs as everyone adopts approved methods to benefit from profit margins.
Many accreditation schemes offer savings and discounts on trade products and training courses.
In truth, if you neglect health & safety or environmental standards then you run the risk of being prosecuted. If this happens, it will take your focus away from your business, you could potentially lose staff/contractors (and to replace them, recruitment isn’t cheap), and the bad press makes your business overall less profitable.
3. Demonstrates technical knowledge and expertise
In a market that is today creating buildings and infrastructure to provide for health services, educational attainment, and community activities tomorrow, accreditation can be a massive asset.
From an employer’s perspective it demonstrates that you are serious and committed to keeping your skills and knowledge up-to-date.
From an employee’s perspective, keeping your accreditation current can be the difference between potential career advancement and taking a sideways step with a different employer. Having achieved accreditation also means that you can transfer between contracts/employers/companies seamlessly as you’ve met certain standards and your new employer/client can trust that you know what you’re doing when they hire you.
From a business perspective, as an accredited company you will reap the benefits of being kept up-to-date on industry standards, emerging technologies, legislation, and so on.
Nationally, accreditation is highly regarded as a reliable indicator of competence and project managers expect, and are required to contract, suitably accredited personnel onto their sites. The industry standard is now very much focused on ‘how you do’ not ‘what you do’.
4. Gain a marketing advantage
With over 45,000 construction businesses in Scotland, accreditation is a valuable tool when it comes to business growth and competitive advantage.
If you’re looking to expand your business by targeting a new market or supply chain, having the suitable accreditations in place can help by instantly improving your credibility. They’re also a clear indication that your business is looking to have that competitive edge in the market.
Accreditation is validation that you/your business has been meticulously tested by a nationally recognised body and successfully met (or exceeded) their standards. In terms of growing your business this presents a whopping big marketing advantage over your competitors that haven’t yet reached the same accreditation level as you. In short: project buyers won’t have to waste their time and money testing you themselves.
And those competitors that haven’t achieved accreditation? This simply presents another USP (unique selling point) for your business and one that you can promote to potential customers because choosing your accredited business over one that isn’t offer them greater peace of mind.
Almost all accreditation bodies publish a directory of their accredited construction buyers and suppliers. This alone provides a great route for your business to promote your services to like-minded, potential clients.
5. Win more work!
Gaining accreditation is clearly good for business and it also satisfies the requirements for tenders as well as the criteria needed to join approved suppliers’ lists.
Would you like more time to do or grow your business?
Would you like relief from the pressure of being in business?
Louise Percy founded Positive About Business in 2012 to help small and medium-sized businesses start their journey to excellence and improvement.
She specialises in helping businesses achieve accreditations and ISO standards, health & safety compliance, completion of tenders and PQQs and policy documentation.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to find out how your business can benefit!