The UK government’s commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 100% from 1990 levels by 2050 has understandably raised the profile of low carbon technologies among householders.
It’s no longer just eco-conscious, early adopters looking to install low-carbon tech in their homes. The reality of net zero is dawning even on climate sceptics and is behind an explosion in demand for EV charging, solar PV panels, heat pumps and battery storage systems.
There needs to be a massive ramp-up in installations, which is great news for the installation industry, or is it? Installers are in huge demand to install domestic solar systems, batteries, heat pumps and EV chargers, all of which come with their own challenges. Compounding this with a shortage of skilled electrical engineers and complex, rapidly evolving technical and regulatory landscapes, installers potentially have a real battle.
As the market for installing low carbon technologies has matured, installation specialists have had to navigate complex finance, regulation and technology environments. These are all time-consuming, and they keep changing as they evolve. Keeping up with the building requirements for solar installations and the financial incentives for stand-alone battery storage or battery and solar combos alone is an uphill battle.
Coordinating with utility companies and DNOs to obtain grid connection approvals adds more complexity. And it seems that every day brings new advancements in battery technology. Juggling changing requirements and keeping abreast of the latest tech is a full-time job. Low carbon installation management platforms can change this, streamlining workflows, simplifying project management, and giving customers a more rewarding experience overall.
Retrofitting means disruption
The upcoming Future Homes Standard that becomes mandatory from 2025 ensures that homes built from that date onwards will emit 75-80% less carbon than homes built before. While this takes care of future builds, about 80% of the buildings that will be around in 2050 – the timeframe for net zero – have already been built.
This means homeowners and landlords will be looking to retrofit low-carbon devices and technologies in properties not designed for them. Regarding retrofitting, every site is different, and every installation has unique challenges. Any installation process has to be both standardised to ensure the installation company can maximise efficiency and flexible enough to allow for any changes that can and will, occur.
There’s no doubt that installing low-carbon technologies is disruptive for most households. EV charge point installations are a relative breeze compared to installing solar PV, batteries and especially heat pumps. Keeping customers happy throughout the whole process calls for exemplary coordination and communication.
With so many moving parts to a clean tech installation, installers must be at the top of their game to keep customers happy and up with growing demand. That’s why many are turning to digitalised installation management platforms that guide the installer and customer through the process in a comprehensive, standardised way.
Solutions for effective, efficient low-carbon installations
Technology that supports installing low carbon systems in households is revolutionising the operational efficiency of installers. Software platforms that map the installation journey have proved instrumental in streamlining field operations, strengthening communication and collaboration among different parties and empowering customers with knowledge and active participation. Such platforms offer digitised structured workflows, simplified administration processes and centralised data hubs that track vital project details and address potential problems.
Green tech installation technology like that provided by Jumptech involves the customer by prompting for key information and communicating directly on the installation date for equipment, who will be installing it, and what to expect.
With a comprehensive workflow of every element of the installation project, the software platform removes the risk of details being forgotten or falling through the cracks. The very things that can derail an installation and create a poor customer experience.
The benefits of using installation management software are felt across the whole installation experience – from the survey and quotation through to warranty registration and customer onboarding and activation.
Everyone involved experiences the benefits: the installer, multiple trades, equipment suppliers and, most importantly, the customer through a centralised customer management system that delivers a personalised approach to customer service.
The platform ensures that the service delivery from the installer is consistent while maintaining high-quality standards. A centralised system alleviates the administrative load stemming from countless emails, phone calls, and photo exchanges, making the whole process more efficient and accurate.
Solar and battery installations are made more efficient and effective through the thorough and accurate recording of details of aspects like scaffolding requirements, roofing status, and electrical installation for comprehensive documentation. The software also guides project documentation, including MCS, DNO and installation documents from the first to third fix stages throughout the process.
From a practical perspective, installers and contractors are kept constantly ‘job-ready’ with visual reminders of the essential items needed for each work site. The multi-tool, multi-job app guides each trade through their tasks and collects vital on-site information. Meanwhile, back at the office, quoting and invoicing efficiency is maximised by the seamless integration of accounting and operations management systems into the platform.
Post-installation benefits include efficient and effective product registration and onboarding of customers, which helps to reduce callbacks and ensures the customer gets the most out of their low-carbon equipment. Efficient product registration is made possible through clear instructions for gathering necessary information, including photographs, serial numbers and walk-through videos for onboarding customers.
A consistent five-star installation service
In a scenario where so much can potentially go wrong, installers of low-carbon technologies need to get everything right the first time or as close to the first time as possible. As the market matures, competition will grow, and margins will shrink.
What’s more, with a limited talent pool of qualified electrical installation engineers, installation companies cannot afford to send engineers back to check details or fix errors that needn’t have occurred in the first place. Using installation management software that keeps track of every detail and guides you through a safe, compliant, and effective installation just makes commercial and environmental sense.
As we move towards a net zero future, installers will have great opportunities to help householders convert to low-carbon technology. Those who take advantage of advanced technology to help them will be able to do so in the most efficient and effective way.