The Fire Industry Association (FIA) has published its second Market Condition Review, highlighting major increases in enquiries and tender invitations.
The report is a ‘picture’ taken every six months based on the survey conducted by the FIA of both member and non-member companies across the UK. It covers topics including workforce, tenders, enquiries, and suppliers.
The report revealed that 78% of respondents reported an increase in enquiries, compared to the previous report, with London and the Southeast being responsible for almost a third of them.
It also showed that workforce training is increasing compared to the previous six months and 62% polled report that tender prices have stayed the same while supplier prices continue to rise overall.
Equally from that overall rise, in the last six months FIA member companies received nearly 15% more invitations to tender than non-members did.
Increased fire safety in general
CEO of the FIA Graham Ellicott said: "It’s encouraging to see that the fire sector is now beginning to experience the growth that others have already reported, as both enquiry levels and tender invitations have increased over the last six months."
"In contrast, tender prices and labour recruitment have generally stayed at the same level as in the previous survey. Increased supplier prices mean that gross profit margins have fallen in some cases. However, looking forward, a continuation in the trend for a greater call for companies to be third party certificated and in increased training bodes well for the sector and for fire safety in general in the UK.
"It is also particularly gratifying to see that In the last six months FIA member companies received nearly 15% more invitations to tender for business than non-members did, thus in part proving the value of a trade association."
Increase in workmanship
In further results, only 1% said delivery times had decreased on average, while the majority (54%) received payment within 31 to 60 days. A small number (12%) collected money in fewer than 30 days, while 3% had to wait more than 90 days.
More than half (53%) of the survey respondents said they had increased the amount of training they carried out with their workforce. Only four per cent told us they would reduce this quantity, with the rest keeping the figure unchanged.
Encouragingly, nearly two-thirds (63%) spoke of their intention to do more training for their employees, with just 2% planning to decrease these levels.
Recruiting apprentices did not seem to be something that had taken place much among those we interviewed, as it transpired only 21 per cent had hired a youngster to learn the ropes in this way.
The majority (58%) said they had made no change to the amount of skilled labour they employed in the last six months. Just a handful (4%) saw a reduction in this type of workmanship, while nearly two-fifths (38%) recruited more of it.
Download the review in full from www.fia.uk.com