reach new heights

Reach New Heights

15 July 2018

Choosing the right powered access platform for property maintenance

We make decisions every day of our lives. Some are certainly simple and carry no risk – like deciding what to have for breakfast: bacon and eggs or alternatively cereal? There are the daily decisions like crossing the road: low risk if chosen carefully. Other decisions, especially business ones that involve money are high risk and require careful consideration.

Think first

Growing your business and acquiring specialist equipment is a major consideration and requires a lot of preparatory work. In an SME (Small to Medium Enterprise) it’s all too easy to put off big decisions, the day to day operations and workload have a nasty habit of getting in the way. But without thinking about your business and where you want to be, you run the risk of treading water and letting your competitors gain the advantage.

Take a step back

Stand back and look at what your competitors are doing. Are they getting the sort of jobs you would like to get, are their businesses visibly growing whilst yours isn’t? Are you giving the best service you can to your existing customers? Is there something you could offer them but can’t at the moment? Would a better powered access platform for property maintenance meet the need? If so, which one? Asking these pertinent questions will generate a lot of information as you do your research.

Five point buying decision plan

1: Gather the raw information – specific and general
Specific : about the equipment, your service and customers
General : general knowledge about life and events that touch on the specifics above

2: Inwardly digest
Turn the raw information over in your mind and look at it from different directions. Bring the facts together and see how they fit. When ideas, even partial ideas, begin to form jot them down. Don’t bother to try and analyse and develop at this stage. Just make a list of what might work, what you will need and potential customers.

3: Forget it!
So far it’s been the conscious mind that’s been working. At this stage you probably can’t see the wood for the trees. Take a break from the decision thinking. The mind is a wondrous thing. It works on two levels: the conscious and the unconscious. Spend some time doing what you enjoy doing out of work: a weekend with the family; watch that film you’ve been meaning to see; attend a local event; fit an early morning walk into your schedule. As a businessman once said: “chill out and sleep on it for a week”

4: It appears!
Sometimes you wake up at 3 in the morning with a solution; or when out on an early morning walk, the ideas float before your mind and the puzzle comes together. It may not fully form but you will have a good grasp of what needs to be done.

5. Make it reality
At this stage, share what you have with others: family, friends, colleagues, advisors. Invite comments and criticism. Hone it and perfect it.

Ask the experts
At any point you can get in touch with the experts at Promax Access. Run your ideas past them and ask which powered access platform would best meet your needs. Need to reach a certain height? Want to expand your building maintenance capabilities? Want to work both indoors and outdoors? Promax Access provide an extensive range of solutions along with honest advice and an excellent reputation.

Promax can be contacted by phone or email using the website contact page. Or you can use the website “Chat” facility.

Take advantage of the best.

Promax Access sell a variety of equipment available for working at height.

moving up in the world - powered access expectations

What are your powered access expectations?

If you are a small business owner in the property maintenance market, you will probably be using ladders and scaffolding to reach those jobs that need doing at height. Whilst first floor windows and guttering can be reached using ladders or erecting scaffolding, the larger commercial contracts require a more efficient and safer means of working at height.

Growing your business means winning more commercial contracts and that means becoming more flexible and efficient in fulfilling contracts. Powered access platforms are efficient, safe and can cut time and costs for most jobs at height but investing in plant is a big decision for many companies.

The options are to rent, buy or lease the equipment. There are pros and cons to all three and discussing with your accountant will help you to decide which is most advantageous to you. You will need to evaluate your current circumstances, your capabilities and your future plans.

When deciding which finance method to use a simple rule of thumb may help your decision process. If the equipment will be not be used more than 60 to 70 percent of the time, then start with renting. So if you are pursuing a new contract that is short-term, then renting may be the best option. It has its advantages: a specific machine can be rented for particular work, usually for the length of the contract. This will give you experience in operating the access platform and fulfilling the contract on time and within budget. However, the risk is that if the equipment is not being used because of a change in project schedule or an unforeseen hold-up, you still foot the rental cost and your profit on the contract could go out of the window.

Raising Your Powered Access Expectations

After gaining some experience by using rented powered access platforms and with a few larger jobs starting to appear on the horizon, then buying or leasing might become a better financial option. As with all purchasing decisions start with a few simple considerations.

1 – chose the right equipment for your needs.
Consider both now and for the foreseeable future (2 to 3 years). An ideal entry machine would be the Spider 13.65
. This is a versatile MEWP which is road towable by trailer behind a 4×4 or van. It has a simple, but also intuitive operating system and an air/water power line to the cage. This access platform has a working height of over 40 feet and an outreach of 20 feet. It is ideal for property inspection and maintenance.

2 – weigh up the finance options.
Some suppliers offer finance plans for customers and will also help them buy the plant they need. Look for accredited lending schemes that also have payment options including hire purchase, leases and contract hire. Promax Access has a number of options available and their friendly staff can guide you through the entire process.

3 – talk to your accountant.
Discuss your financial plans and seek any tax benefits. Talk to them about Enterprise Finance Schemes and any help that may be offered to local businesses (for example: by Finance For Enterprise)

A final thought on powered access expectations

Don’t forget savings could be made by purchasing a pre-owned access platform. It’s just like buying a used car, check its service/maintenance history and whether it comes with new LOLER certification. From time to time Promax Access have specially selected equipment available.