From Little Acorns…
Plans have been announced by the Government this week to help kick-start the construction industry and boost the economy……and even the most cynical among us has to admit that there’s a lot of sense in what they’re proposing. The messages are confusing and the main media channels for construction sector news and comment have taken very different approaches to sieving through the information to uncover the various nuggets at the centre of the proposals. In a nutshell, however, the aims of the changes are three-fold:
- To create new jobs in the housing sector – a forecast 140,000 of them!
- To relax planning requirements and make residential developments and commercial extensions easier
- To provide funding guarantees to help developers access capital more cheaply and easily
It’s early days yet and the Government is planning to begin a consultation on the relaxation of the planning requirements, which is certain to have its opponents. However, what’s already clear is that the Government is planning the changes as a temporary measure until the construction sector and the wider economy has recovered.
As with so many announcements of Government proposals, the fruition of these plans could be a long time coming and there’s likely to be some watering down of some of the ideas along the way. However, for those operating within the construction sector these proposals do smack of opportunity and if there’s one thing among all of this that is certain it’s that the companies who are ready to grasp those opportunities will be the ones to benefit.
Being ready for a major drive in the sector that has Government backing and a clear financial strategy behind it is about much more than knowing that there’s change on the way, however. While the consultation takes place and the decision makers iron out exactly what can be achieved, now is the time to be building relationships with developers and specifiers and setting out a clear stall that highlights your capabilities.
The mistake that so many companies make with marketing is to think about it when they need to win business instead of building up momentum first. It’s not often that businesses receive such an enormous heads up that there are likely to be projects coming along so waiting until developers are looking to appoint their delivery partners before raising your profile is a gamble that most can ill afford. Instead, it’s time to seize the day…..plant the seeds now and who knows how your company could blossom when the proposals become reality.