I have long been of the opinion that builders should tick very much to building work and stay away from windows and doors. Very much in the same way that window and door installers should stay away from building work. They are separate for a reason. Seems someone else agrees with me.

Tweet of agreement

As part of the wider #DoubleGlazingHour discussion freshly relaunched on Tuesday evening, @bigwindowfitter tweeted this:

I was glad to see someone thinking along my lines. It was at this point well known industry figure Joe Martoccia added his perspective:

I don’t think it’s unfair to say that each trade should stick to their own line of work. No point being a jack of all trades without being a master of one. There are too many mistakes to make which can cost everyone involved in a project valuable time and money.

I’ll give you one scenario. How often have you had jobs as an installation company where a builder has either got involved at some stage or has said “don’t worry, I can fit these windows” only to later come back on the phone either admitting he/she has made a mistake, or even blaming the “mis-measured” windows on your, despite you ordering said product to the exact specifications given?

Builders are not the best when it comes to windows and doors. But, as Joe hints to in his tweet, should the window and door industry be taking on the builders at their own game?

Better placed?

If you look through that whole thread on Twitter it makes for a great read. It also talks about the idea that the window and door industry might be in a good place to take on building work, thanks to new extension products coming out of companies like Ultraframe.

It’s a fair point. Ultraframe, through themselves and their network of fabricators have been developing and bringing to market products designed specifically to disrupt the extensions market for the past couple of years. These are products designed to remove the builder out of the equation (almost) and leave the majority of the work required down to the window company and their own trades people.

To a point I agree, but only if window and door companies are using products specifically designed to replace certain aspects of building work. I don’t believe that window fitters should go and start building dwarf walls, digging foundations or building brick columns. That sort of work should always be left to a proper builder. Providing you can get one to turn up.

Clearly defined roles

At our place, we use trades people specific to each part of the job required. We use a builder just for building work, a plasterer for plastering, an electrician for all electrical work no matter how small. You get my point. Each of these trades people are good at what they are trained to do, that is their defined role and that it how it should be.

By keeping trades focused solely on their own expert areas, you minimise the risk of poor quality work and mistakes that can ultimately cost you or your company money and a stain on your reputation.

Matters are not helped further when there is a lack of so called experts in each trade. Honesty time, how many of you reading this have either experienced shoddy work from a builder, know someone who has, or has been unfortunate enough to hire a rubbish builder at your company before finding out what they are really like. Bet that’s most of you.

And that’s the problem. Finding a good trades person in any trade seems to be becoming harder and harder these days. Is it because all the good ones are retiring? Are the apprenticeship schemes churning out sub-par trades people? Is it a combination of many things? A post for another day perhaps.

Either way, I am still of the opinion that window and door work should be left to the window and door installers. I would also love to hear from you on this one. As always, please leave your comments via the section below.

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