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ASCE 7, Uplift Ratings and Warranties

Posted By Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Monday, July 15, 2019

Greetings WSRCA Members,

As a follow-up to the Western Roofing Expo Seminar “Roof Wind Speeds: ASCE 7, Uplift Ratings & Warranties” Brian Chamberlain of Carlisle Construction Materials is releasing his PowerPoint presentation to the WSRCA membership for their roofing design library.
 
An ongoing issue that frustrates the industry as a whole is the confusion in how a roofing assembly will meet the building code, will meet an uplift rating, and be warranted based on local wind speeds. Since local wind speeds is the common factor in all three, an understanding of how wind speed is used associated to each needs to be clarified. This presentation focuses on the process, from uplift to warranty.

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LEGAL  DISCLAIMER

All rights reserved.  All content (text, trademarks, illustrations, reports, photos, logos, graphics, files, designs, arrangements, etc.) in this Technical Opinion (“Opinion”) is the intellectual property of Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA) and is protected by the applicable protective laws governing intellectual property. The Opinion is intended for the exclusive use by its members as a feature of their membership. This document is intended to be used for educational purposes only, and no one should act or rely solely on any information contained in this Opinion as it is not a substitute for the advice of an attorney or construction engineer with specific project knowledge. Neither WSRCA nor any of its, contractors, subcontractors, or any of their employees, directors, officers, agents, or assigns make any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or any third party’s use (or the results of such use) of any information or process disclosed in the Opinion.  Reference herein to any general or specific commercial product, process or service does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement or recommendation by WSRCA. References are provided as citations and aids to help identify and locate other resources that may be of interest, and are not intended to state or imply that WSRCA sponsors, is affiliated or associated with, or is legally responsible for the content reflected in those resources. WSRCA has no control over those resources and the inclusion of any references does not necessarily imply the recommendation or endorsement of same.

Tags:  TECHNICAL 

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The Trade’s Labor Crisis and How to Combat It

Posted By Kandi Hamble and Ashley Rannikar, Art Unlimited, Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Authors: Kandi Hamble and Ashley Rannikar

Company: Art Unlimited - brings Life to marketing. Providing roofing contractors and business owners digital marketing services since 1982.


On one side of the fence, people are struggling to find jobs. On the other side, employers are struggling to find qualified employees to fill those positions. Skilled trades have been especially hard hit. They are fighting against misconceptions and struggling to show the value they offer not only our communities but those who work the job.


When the recession started in 2007, it is estimated by the National Association of Home Builders that 70% of skilled laborers left the trade in search of a more stable career. Now that things are looking up, how many of those 70% have returned to the trade? Less than half. This is a brutal hit to a booming industry and economy. Additionally, Memphisdailynews.com reports that only one skilled tradesman enters the workforce for every five who retire.


In the face of these two obstacles, how can companies combat the hiring crisis? We believe the answer is to be a company worth working for - not just a paycheck, but a business who genuinely cares about your employees and improve their quality of life.


Everything you do sends a message. Here are three ways to overcome hiring obstacles from the inside-out:

 

  • Know your company purpose

  • Create your company personality

  • Change perception about your company

Know Your Company Purpose

As humans, we all look for purpose. We want our lives and our work to mean something. Time is our most valuable resource, and we want to spend it wisely. Knowing this, how does purpose fit into the jobs we choose? Purpose plays a major role, and while it may not always be crystal clear, it affects everything from how you feel about your job to how you interact with coworkers and customers.


Let me introduce to you two identical construction businesses in the same market.

Company 1 is a thriving company with a solid employee base. Turnover is rare, though they are almost always hiring because business is growing. People in the community know and trust this company.

Company 2, on the other hand, is struggling. They are always hiring because turnover is high. People inwardly groan when they see the company is working on something around town. Skilled people only work there if they are desperate.


What do you think the difference is between Company 1 and Company 2? The difference is in the leadership team.

 

  • The owner of Company 1 knows his purpose in the community. He is there to make it a better place to live and work. He knows his employees are a big part of making this happen.

  • The owner of Company 2 is frustrated by how difficult it has become to keep his business afloat. He takes his frustration out on his employees. He has lost sight of his purpose, why he started his business in the first place. He knows the owner of Company 1 and wishes his business could be thriving so well. But where does he start?


Do you think the owner of Company 2 can turn around his business? We KNOW he can! Let’s look closer at the owner of Company 1:

 

  • He sees his company as an integral part of his community. He has a purpose and is constantly sharing it. His work shows him carrying out that purpose.

  • His employees know the purpose of their work. They have ‘bought into it’ by working at Company 1. Each day is purpose-filled, which gives them the determination to see even the hard days through. They know the end result is improvement not only for the company but for their community.


Keeping this in mind, how can the owner of Company 2 –and you– use purpose to change the view of your company? How do you define your purpose? Here are four questions for you to answer for yourself. There is no right or wrong answer.

 

  1. What service do you provide? This may seem rudimentary, but it is important! How do you serve others through your company? This can help define your purpose. (example: We repair or replace roofs.)

  2. How do you provide your service? This could also be phrased: How do you treat your customers? What emotions do you want to evoke when your trade, your company, your brand is seen around town? What needs to happen to change this? (example: We communicate and care about those we work for. People are happy to see us.)

  3. What does your company offer the community? How do the services you supply help improve your community? What value do they give, either to individual families or the community as a whole? (example: New or repaired roofs keep families safe and their homes protected. This makes the community look good.)

  4. How do you give back to the community? This goes above and beyond selling your services. Think about how you can help your community through volunteering, donations, or education.


Defining your purpose is just the first step in changing the perception of your company. Keep in mind this will take time. At first, you will need to be very intentional about injecting your purpose into each decision. As time goes on it will become easier until you suddenly realize you are living and breathing your company's purpose in every action.

It all starts with you. By defining your purpose, how you improve your community, and how you treat others, you will bring change to your company. This will seep into your marketing and out into how the trades are viewed.

Create Your Company Personality

Did you know companies can have personalities? Going back to Companies 1 and 2, they each had different personalities based not only on who their leadership was, but what the purpose was.


Employees at both companies work hard, but at Company 1, they have fun doing it. A comradery has been built through teamwork and shared experiences. Coworkers are even doing things together outside of work hours. They feel valued by their employer.


At Company 2, employees work hard, get a paycheck, and go home to crash for a day or so before doing the grinding work all over. They feel like a number and unvalued. They don’t get along with co-workers and definitely don’t see them outside of work.


Which company would you work for?


One thing which defines your company personality is your core values. Having core values documented will work with your purpose to provide a code of conduct for your employees. Company culture and personality grow out of core values in action. They answer these six questions:

  1. What is it like to work at your company? Do you have consistent hours and fair compensation? Do you provide the resources needed for completing jobs? Do employees know what to expect when they start their first day of work? Do job seekers have a good idea about what they will encounter when they apply for a job?

  2. How do you treat your employees? Do you treat each employee fairly and with respect? Do you publicly appreciate and privately instruct on improvements? How do you show them they are not just working to make someone else a buck or two? Do you take responsibility for mistakes and work to make them right?

  3. How do you expect your employees to interact with others? This includes coworkers and people they meet throughout the course of the day. If they are working out in the public, they become advertising for your company and the trade they are working in. Anyone in the area will see and hear how they interact with each other.

  4. How should customers expect to be treated? Your customers will have expectations of how they want to be treated. Do your values and theirs align? Do your actions reflect your words? Practice what you preach!

  5. How are you involved in your community? What value do you add, aside from creating jobs? How do you pour into your community? Do people recognize you as a respectable business and get behind your work?

  6. How are you consistently showing your core values? From your online presence to in-person interactions, you need to deliver what you say you will. Consistency in all you do is critical to changing the labor crisis.

Keep your core values short, direct, and to the point. They must be easy to remember and act on. Putting these values into action will help you build trust with those who interact with your company. Stick to your core values and eventually everyone who comes into contact with your employees, property, services, website, and marketing will know what you stand for.

Change Perception About Your Company

What is the perception of the trade you work in? Changing the perception of the trades –and your company– may be one of the biggest ways to combat the hiring crisis. “Young adults often see vocational jobs as a grueling line of work offering no career advancement or financial and job security,” says the Washington Post.


In the quote from the Washington Post above, we see three major misconceptions to overcome. Grueling work, also often seen as undesirable hard work geared towards men only. Lack of career advancement and job security. Lack of financial security. How can you change these perceptions? Knowing your purpose and having a defined personality is a good start.


How can you get new people to buy into the trades? Drawing in a fresh perspective is always a great way to shake things up and make improvements, no matter the industry. How can you invite women into the trades? They have unique viewpoints and skills which can be a valuable asset to make the trades even stronger. On the flip side, if your employees are miserable working for you they will communicate that and this battle is already lost.


Thinking about career advancement and job security, how can the perception surrounding this be changed? If these jobs are considered low skill, changing the perception could be as simple as hosting workshops where interested people come to learn more about the job. Doing special training at your local high school could spark students’ interest while also giving them basic required skills. This could also help close the gap of gaining skills which may seem inaccessible. The costs of training and receiving lower pay as an apprentice may be doable for a young person out of school, but with a family comes greater responsibility.


What does financial security mean? This is different in each part of the country. Each day, millions of adults trade our valuable resource of time for a piece of paper which allows us to live in our homes, put food on the table, and clothe our families. It gives us the resources to get to work, church, school, and do fun things. If we worry about the paycheck we get, it affects each part of our lives – including our job. If the trades are seen as lacking in financial security then a large chunk of potentially great employees will not even consider such a career change.


Take a good, hard look at how your actions are affecting the trades. Your action - and inaction - speaks louder than words in changing perceptions. It all starts with you! Think about the message you are sending through your past and present employees. Treat them well, be clear on what you expect from them and from yourself.. Build a solid digital presence with consistent messaging in your website, job ads, and social media. Add in traditional media such as billboards, flyers, and newspapers. With each of these components, send a consistent message about working in the trades. Live and breathe your core values.


Everything you do sends a message. What message are you sending?


Kandi Hamble is the content editor at Art Unlimited. She produces great informative & educational content on a monthly basis for her clients’ websites & blogs. She loves improving her clients’ online presence through thoughtfully-crafted & individualized content. For more information, contact Art Unlimited, www.artunlimitedusa.com


Ashley Rannikar is an SEO manager at Art Unlimited. Her job is to increase website accessibility for users and search engines. She is an expert at increasing website ranking and a master at content writing. For more information, contact Art Unlimited, www.artunlimitedusa.com

Tags:  BUSINESS 

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Form I-9: Employment Eligibility Verification USCIS Form I-9 & Checklist

Posted By Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Monday, June 17, 2019

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As a follow-up to the Western Roofing Expo seminar “Top 5 Immigration Issues for Roofers” Cotney Construction Law/WSRCA Legal Advisor Trent Cotney is releasing the USCIS Form I-9: Employment Eligibility Verification to WSRCA members, as well as a helpful checklist.  Employers are required to have Form I-9 on file for all employees, whether they are U.S. citizens or not.
 
According to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), part of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, federal law requires every employer that recruits, refers for a fee or hires an individual for employment in the United States must complete a Form I-9.

This is required for citizens and non-citizens. On the form, an employee must attest to his or her employment authorization. The employee must also present his or her employer with acceptable documents evidencing identity and employment authorization. The employer must examine the employment eligibility and identity document(s) an employee presents to determine whether the document(s) reasonably appear to be genuine and to relate to the employee and record the document information on the Form I-9.

The list of acceptable documents can be found on the last page of the form. Employers must retain Form I-9 for a designated period and make it available for inspection by authorized government officers.

The updated form replaces a version that was issued in 2016. The new form expires on Aug. 31, 2019.


• Download the I-9 Form Here

• Download the I-9 Checklist Here

 

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LEGAL  DISCLAIMER

All rights reserved.  All content (text, trademarks, illustrations, reports, photos, logos, graphics, files, designs, arrangements, etc.) in this Technical Opinion (“Opinion”) is the intellectual property of Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA) and is protected by the applicable protective laws governing intellectual property. The Opinion is intended for the exclusive use by its members as a feature of their membership. This document is intended to be used for educational purposes only, and no one should act or rely solely on any information contained in this Opinion as it is not a substitute for the advice of an attorney or construction engineer with specific project knowledge. Neither WSRCA nor any of its, contractors, subcontractors, or any of their employees, directors, officers, agents, or assigns make any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or any third party’s use (or the results of such use) of any information or process disclosed in the Opinion.  Reference herein to any general or specific commercial product, process or service does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement or recommendation by WSRCA. References are provided as citations and aids to help identify and locate other resources that may be of interest, and are not intended to state or imply that WSRCA sponsors, is affiliated or associated with, or is legally responsible for the content reflected in those resources. WSRCA has no control over those resources and the inclusion of any references does not necessarily imply the recommendation or endorsement of same.

Tags:  LEGAL 

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Fighting the Opioid Epidemic with Care and Data

Posted By Chris Alberts, Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Monday, April 29, 2019
Updated: Monday, April 29, 2019

Courtesy of: Alexander Acosta — U.S. Secretary of Labor


WASHINGTON, D.C. -- With National Prescription Take Back Day last week, the Department of Labor released new informationon what we have learned about the opioid crisis and how we are improving our effectiveness in overcoming its challenges.

In 2017, President Donald Trump’s administration declared the opioid epidemic a national public health emergency and directed all executive agencies to use every appropriate emergency authority to minimize the devastation. Since 2017, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs’ (OWCP) has dedicated significant resources to stem the abuse, misuse, and proliferation of opioids to protect 2.7 million federal workers from harmful opioid prescription practices.

The use of opioids to treat injured federal workers continued, virtually unchecked, until 2017. The capability to monitor dose level and duration by the department was not even available until operational changes were instituted that year. Since we started this effort, a series of successes can be attributed to the implementation of a four-point strategic plan: (1) effective controls, (2) tailored treatment, (3) impactful communications with employees and providers, and (4) aggressive fraud detection.

The strategic plan’s core is a process where the department continuously gathers information and analyzes data. The results yielded great progress:

• 51% decline in new opioid prescriptions that last more than 30 days;

• 59% decline in claimants prescribed a morphine equivalent dose (MED) of 500 or more;

• 31% decline in claimants prescribed a MED of 90 or more;

• 30% decline in overall opioid use; and

• 24% drop in new opioid prescriptions

A recent study highlights the unique challenges facing a legacy population of injured federal workers who have been prescribed opioids over an extended period of time. Specifically, the study showed that nearly 1 in 4 injured workers in this group had been prescribed a high dose of 90+ morphine equivalent dose. This is important because the higher the opioid dose, the higher the risk for misuse and overdose death. Higher doses, greater than 100 MED, have more than two times the risk relative to lower doses. Additional risk factors, including the use of extended-release opioids and the associated use of certain interacting medications, were also identified.

The legacy challenges needed to be confronted. All federal injured workers with a prescription of 90+ MED underwent extensive individual case reviews. Treating physicians were contacted and, as needed, nurses were assigned. Our goal was to work with the medical provider and injured worker to provide opioid treatment where needed, reduce the opioid risk level, and assist in securing the benefits needed for pain management. These efforts are continuing with second level reviews currently being conducted by a clinical team of pharmacists.

Tapering an addictive drug takes time and there are a host of interacting factors to consider, yet as the statistics prove, the intense focus produced a real difference. This effort is not the federal government deciding what is best for patients. Rather, the federal government is acting as a responsible employer by caring about its workforce and ensuring that employees are getting the treatment and support needed for what can be a challenging recovery.

We are committed to (1) engaging individual employees and (2) analyzing the effects on the employee population as a whole. To win this battle, we must embrace a strategy that pursues accurate information, continuously evaluates that information, and invests the time necessary to find the right, healthy solutions for individuals struggling with opioids.

Alexander Acosta is the 27th U.S. secretary of labor.

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LEGAL  DISCLAIMER

All rights reserved.  All content (text, trademarks, illustrations, reports, photos, logos, graphics, files, designs, arrangements, etc.) in this Technical Opinion (“Opinion”) is the intellectual property of Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA) and is protected by the applicable protective laws governing intellectual property. The Opinion is intended for the exclusive use by its members as a feature of their membership. This document is intended to be used for educational purposes only, and no one should act or rely solely on any information contained in this Opinion as it is not a substitute for the advice of an attorney or construction engineer with specific project knowledge. Neither WSRCA nor any of its, contractors, subcontractors, or any of their employees, directors, officers, agents, or assigns make any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or any third party’s use (or the results of such use) of any information or process disclosed in the Opinion.  Reference herein to any general or specific commercial product, process or service does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement or recommendation by WSRCA. References are provided as citations and aids to help identify and locate other resources that may be of interest, and are not intended to state or imply that WSRCA sponsors, is affiliated or associated with, or is legally responsible for the content reflected in those resources. WSRCA has no control over those resources and the inclusion of any references does not necessarily imply the recommendation or endorsement of same.

Tags:  LEGAL  SAFETY 

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Art Unlimited Releases Seamless Website Form Tester

Posted By Anna Anderson, Art Unlimited, Tuesday, April 23, 2019

This digital marketing company engineered a simple fix to stop losing online customers

 Art Unlimited, a fast-growing digital marketing and web design company in Minnesota’s Northwoods, just announced their new form-verification WordPress plugin, the FormTester 365. It’s designed to automatically test a website’s Gravity Forms every day and send a verification email to ensure they’re still delivering correctly.  With the eServices industry revenue growing by 18.5% annually, it’s time the busy business owner had a reliable, economical solution to stop losing online leads.

“How many times a year do we hear, ‘I tried to contact you, but your website form was broken.’? And how many more times do we not hear anything at all, because that customer has given up completely?” said Anna Anderson, CEO at Art Unlimited. “The FormTester 365 gives companies and customers the assurance that their website forms are working every single day.”

Once the Formtester 365 is installed, business owners can look forward to filing a single email every day (or even every week) and knowing their forms are working perfectly. No lost customers, and no lost time on manual form submissions.

It’s now more essential than ever for companies to know they’re not losing valuable leads through something as simple as a broken bit of code or a plugin update gone wrong: at least 49.7% of companies state their online forms are their highest converting lead generation tool!

A few of the FormTester’s earliest testers said, “It’s just like a morning alarm that goes off and lets us know that all is well,” and “We know every morning our leads, payments, and customer questions are coming through correctly.”  

When a business installs the FormTester 365 plugin to their website, it finds every page with a form and sets up automated testing for it. Each form is tested daily, and business owners receive a weekly report. They are notified immediately after any failed submissions.

The FormTester 365 saves companies the headache of losing leads and the inconvenience of running a manual form check every day—instead, they’ll be able to focus their energy on improving the content and methods that get people to fill out those forms in the first place.

You’re probably already over-checking your email: it’s time to make it worthwhile.

Art Unlimited is a team of digital marketing professionals who strive to maintain a balance within the constantly changing trends of the industry. Their goal is to ensure that their clients’ businesses succeed.

 

If you would like more information about the FormTester 365 or are interested in becoming a beta tester, please visit formtester365.com or email team@formtester365.com.

Tags:  MEMBERS IN THE NEWS 

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5 Steps You Can Take to Help You Build A Predictable Sales Model

Posted By Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Monday, April 22, 2019

Courtesy of: Ryan Groth — Sales Transformation Group, Inc.,

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The top 100 list provided by Roofing Contractor Magazine is really a special honor to achieve. When looking up and down the list each year, I recognize market leaders who I know are doing certain things better than everyone else. To be fair, the top line isn’t everyone’s measure of success for building their roofing business.  However, if you’re looking to become the best operator you can possibly be, just look at this list and you will notice a group of professionals that are inspired by the others on the list and are driven to innovate and share what they’ve learned to grow – which helps the industry grow. It’s a great honor to be on that list if you’re a roofing contractor. So, if you’re looking to find a way on the list or want to find yourself higher on the list, here are five steps you can take to help you get there.

The first step that your company should take is to designate a leader to oversee sales, after all the list is about the top line number. The “Sales Manager” is one of the Roofing industry’s most underfilled positions, however when filled properly it can be like switching out a four cylinder for a V8 engine for your company. Finding a good sales manager can be difficult, but with using the right tools you can identify the right competencies for the job.  From my experience working with several top 100 roofing contractors, grabbing a sales leader from a different industry can serve very well because they are used to more developed sales structures, which translates very well in roofing. However, be sure to screen them by using tools like I recommend – candidate assessment tools for example from Objective Management Group based in Boston, MA is a great way to identify Sales competencies. The biggest competencies that you’re looking for in a Sales Manager are: desire for sales success, commitment to do whatever it takes as long as it’s moral and ethical, the right outlook about themselves and your company’s future, taking responsibility (the opposite of excuse making), accountability, motivation, recruiting and coaching. Roofing technicalities are the easy part, they can learn that over time. Chances are, you as the owner have plenty of technical expertise, what you likely lack is the sales competency – which is where the Sales Manager comes in.

The second step you should take is making service and preventative maintenance a top priority. The reason I say this is that service repairs take the least amount of time to close, which makes the sale easier. When you can more easily sell to someone it’s more likely you will sell to many more people, which means you have a low barrier to entry to build many relationships and have a chance to provide a great experience for the client. It’s only when someone has worked with you can they refer you, and it’s only when you have referrals and repeat business do you build more and more trust in your market. If you know me already you’ll know that I preach that the big work comes naturally when you’re consistently focusing on the small work. As service revenue goes, construction revenue should go accordingly. Make sure that when you focus on service, also lock them into a preventative maintenance plan so that they only see your truck arriving at their property for years to come. At this point, you’ll be their trusted advisor and will be able to develop the scope and perhaps cut right through any red tape that could cause you to get your bid shopped out and must compete more heavily on price.

The third step you should take is to get a grip on your sales pipeline. Too often do I see in the roofing industry a “bid it and forget it” mentality. First, they jump right into the presentation of the bid upon invitation without slowing the process down to ask great questions and listen. The only question that most roofers ask when they get to a lead is “where’s your leak”? They don’t learn what is the real problem that’s a compelling reason to buy. The best management of the sales opportunity is when there’s urgency discussed before gathering the real qualification questions, like what they think a roof costs and their decision criteria and timeline. Too many times do I see the roofing industry have “happy ears” which describes contractors getting all excited about an opportunity and not having healthy skepticism. In fact, Objective Management Group has data of over 3,000 specialty contractor sales people and the findings say that we are in the bottom 11% in consultative selling and qualifying competencies out of 1.8 million sales people around the world. Our industry really stinks at managing the pipeline, but if worked on it can pay huge dividends. I’ve seen it occur myself while working with many of the top 100 roofers on this list.

The fourth step you should take is to get a sales pipeline CRM program. Did I just say a curse word, CRM? AH!!! Yes, you need to be able to see what’s going on in your future sales opportunities anytime you want. However, if you really want to see revenue grow then you should score each deal in the pipeline and hold everyone accountable to the appropriate expectations to drive more pipeline. Each deal should be followed up on until a decision is made along with a status of when the decision will be made.

The fifth and final step you should take to help you get on the top 100 list is to set goals. Goals should be specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and time sensitive. You should really consider what is it that you want to achieve and to reverse engineer what it’s going to take to achieve it. It would really help if your sales manager and you came up with a compensation plan that matched these goals and held your sales people and estimators accountable for performing these activities. I also want to be clear with something, just because you don’t have a true “salesperson” right now, doesn’t mean you can’t incorporate these things. One of my favorite lines is “on the way to perfect, you pass up a lot of good”. The principle that I take from this (and teach my clients) is to get started, and don’t expect perfection right away. Tiger Woods said recently in an interview when talking about Lebron James, “anyone can be great for a week, a month, a year. But can you be great for a decade, two decades? What Lebron is doing is unbelievable because he’s doing it for such a long time.”  In closing, you should think about getting on the Roofing top 100! But do what Tiger says, be on there for a long time. Can you stay on there for five year, ten years, twenty years? I hope you can.

 

Good selling,

 

Ryan Groth

President — Sales Transformation Group, Inc.

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LEGAL  DISCLAIMER

All rights reserved.  All content (text, trademarks, illustrations, reports, photos, logos, graphics, files, designs, arrangements, etc.) in this Technical Opinion (“Opinion”) is the intellectual property of Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA) and is protected by the applicable protective laws governing intellectual property. The Opinion is intended for the exclusive use by its members as a feature of their membership. This document is intended to be used for educational purposes only, and no one should act or rely solely on any information contained in this Opinion as it is not a substitute for the advice of an attorney or construction engineer with specific project knowledge. Neither WSRCA nor any of its, contractors, subcontractors, or any of their employees, directors, officers, agents, or assigns make any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or any third party’s use (or the results of such use) of any information or process disclosed in the Opinion.  Reference herein to any general or specific commercial product, process or service does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement or recommendation by WSRCA. References are provided as citations and aids to help identify and locate other resources that may be of interest, and are not intended to state or imply that WSRCA sponsors, is affiliated or associated with, or is legally responsible for the content reflected in those resources. WSRCA has no control over those resources and the inclusion of any references does not necessarily imply the recommendation or endorsement of same.

 

Tags:  BUSINESS 

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Art Unlimited Releases Interactive Software To Give Free Roofing Estimate

Posted By Alec Ward, Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Wednesday, April 10, 2019

 

WSRCA Member Art Unlimited, a web design and digital marketing company in Minnesota’s Northwoods, just released their newest website solution, Decider 2.0. The software allows roofing contractors the ability to give potential customers a project estimate, before scheduling an in-person appointment. The flexibility of Decider 2.0 gives roofing contractors the freedom to customize their Decider 2.0 with the specific products they use, pricing, and company branding.

 

“Through our experience in the roofing industry, we have observed that customers hesitate before reaching out to a professional contractor, leaving them with unanswered questions about pricing and logistics,” said Anna Anderson, CEO of Art Unlimited. “We developed the Decider 2.0 to help serve that project specific information to the customer, narrowing the gap between the contractor and the consumer.”

 

Estimating the cost of a roofing project comes with a multitude of variables, which is one of the primary reasons roofing contractors are apprehensive to attempt project estimates, before doing an on-site visit. In order to accommodate such variances, the Decider 2.0 is programmed to display project estimates based on specific measurables like house size, roofing material, and manufacturers, all which impact the sum total of the project.

 

When a customer walks through Decider 2.0, they are given multiple options for material and price based on what the contractor offers. When the customer reached the end stage and completed their project, they get a detailed summary listing the materials they selected and the relative price estimate. This is also sent to the contractor when the customer fills out the contact form. The customer can request a time to discuss their project at this time.

 

Art Unlimited is a team of digital marketing professionals who strive to maintain a balance within the constantly changing trends of the industry. Their goal is to ensure their clients’ businesses succeed.

 

If you would like more information about Decider 2.0, please visit Art Unlimited’s website at www.artunlimitedusa.com or email info@artunlimitedusa.com

Tags:  MEMBERS IN THE NEWS 

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Condensation Potential & Damage Related to White & Light-Colored Roof Systems

Posted By WSRCA Technical Advisory Section, Tuesday, April 9, 2019

 

Greetings WSRCA Members,


Issues surrounding reports of condensation beneath light-colored single-ply roof membranes in some climates has been one of the more discussed industry-related topics over the past decade. Looking back, it appears that, building owners or tenants would report a mysterious “leak” or water intrusion into interior conditioned space and simply suspected that it was a leak likely associated with a weather event. As more and more of these situations were reported and then evaluated by the roofing contractor or professional roofing consultant certain patterns began to emerge in various climactic zones and general type(s) of roof assemblies.

Many of the similar roof system commonalities consist of mechanically-attached, white or light-colored single-ply roof membranes, installed over wood or steel roof decks with no vapor retarder. Of these roof systems reported as problematic, numerous lack multi-layers of insulation (with offset and staggered joints) and reportedly some have only one layer of insulation, and that is believed to have exacerbated the situation. As evaluations continued, the presence of interior-generated moisture as well as the lack of a vapor retarder and adequate ventilation was determined to be associated with condensation, forming on the underside of the roof membrane or roof deck, rather than a leak caused by some defect or puncture within the roof membrane.

WSRCA has been monitoring issues of condensation and moisture accumulation reported with mechanically-attached, white and light-colored single-ply roof systems, which were constructed without a vapor retarder, and we offer the following information to our Members. As this Bulletin will clarify not all roof systems may be appropriate for all climates.

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A View From the Hill - Political News: Proposed DOL Overtime Rule

Posted By Craig Brightup, The Brightup Group LLC, Tuesday, March 26, 2019


 

by Craig Brightup, The Brightup Group LLC


On March 7, the U.S. Dept. of Labor (DOL) released a proposed regulation to update the salary-level test for determining when a “white collar” employee is exempt from earning overtime. The Obama Administration issued a regulation in 2016 that would have doubled the salary level from $23,660/year ($455/week) to $47,476/ year ($913/week), but it was halted by a federal judge in a challenge led by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce on the basis that the threshold was so high it made the duties test no longer relevant and thus was beyond the statutory authority of the Secretary of Labor. That decision is currently on appeal in the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals while the Trump Administration proposes a more modest update to the overtime regulation, which was last adjusted in 2004.

The proposed rule raises the threshold to $35,308/year ($679/week) and, as advocated by business organizations, reverts to methodology used in the 2004 rule that focused on the 20th percentile of full-time wage earners in the lowest income region of the country (identified as the South) and the retail industry as the baseline. It also makes no changes to the duties tests and has no auto-update feature, both of which are key points for business as well. However, the regulation does seek comments on conducting regularly scheduled rulemakings to update the salary threshold.

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Western States Roofing Contractors Association

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OSHA Provides Much Needed Clarity on Post-Incident Drug Testing and Safety Incentive Programs

Posted By Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Monday, March 11, 2019

Courtesy of: WSRCA Legal Advisor, Cotney Construction Law

 

In 2016, OSHA published its final rule amending 29 C.F.R. § 1904.35 to add a provision prohibiting employers from retaliating against employees for reporting workplace injuries. Since then, employers within the roofing and construction industries have been hesitant to conduct post-accident drug testing for fear of violating the new rule.

Employers can now breathe a sigh of relief as OSHA recently clarified its position on workplace safety incentive programs and post-incident drug testing. The good news is that employers are still permitted to conduct post-incident drug testing and implement safety incentive programs to promote workplace safety and health.

Specifically, OSHA stated that permissible drug testing includes: random drug testing; drug testing pursuant to state and federal laws; and, most importantly, post-accident drug testing to determine the root cause of the incident that harmed or could have harmed employees as long as the testing is not limited to the employees who reported injuries. Employers should now feel comfortable conducting post-accident drug testing of employees so long as they do not target the specific employees who reported the accident and instead test all those whose conduct may have contributed to the accident.

Further, OSHA clarified its position on incentive programs stating that positive action taken under a program that rewards workers for reporting near-misses or hazards is always permissible under the rule. OSHA also clarified its stance on the more controversial rate-based programs, (i.e., providing bonuses to employees for injury free months of work) stating that they are permissible under the rule as long as they are not implemented in a manner that discourages reporting.

Therefore, as long as employers implement adequate precautions to ensure that employees feel free to report injuries, OSHA will not take negative action against the employers for negative action against employees (i.e., withholding of bonus). Adequate precautions include: inventive programs to go along with rate-based programs that reward employees for reporting hazards in the workplace; and training programs that reinforce the employee’s right to report and not face employer retaliation.

 

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Trent Cotney, CEO of Cotney Construction Law, is an advocate for the roofing industry, General Counsel of Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA), Florida Roofing & Sheet Metal Contractors Association (FRSA), Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3), Tennessee Association of Roofing Contractors (TARC), National Women in Roofing (NWIR), and several other local roofing associations. For more information, contact the author at 866.303.5868 or go to www.cotneycl.com.

 

 All rights reserved.  All content (text, trademarks, illustrations, reports, photos, logos, graphics, files, designs, arrangements, etc.) in this Technical Opinion (“Opinion”) is the intellectual property of Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA) and is protected by the applicable protective laws governing intellectual property. The Opinion is intended for the exclusive use by its members as a feature of their membership. This document is intended to be used for educational purposes only, and no one should act or rely solely on any information contained in this Opinion as it is not a substitute for the advice of an attorney or construction engineer with specific project knowledge. Neither WSRCA nor any of its, contractors, subcontractors, or any of their employees, directors, officers, agents, or assigns make any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or any third party’s use (or the results of such use) of any information or process disclosed in the Opinion.  Reference herein to any general or specific commercial product, process or service does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement or recommendation by WSRCA. References are provided as citations and aids to help identify and locate other resources that may be of interest, and are not intended to state or imply that WSRCA sponsors, is affiliated or associated with, or is legally responsible for the content reflected in those resources. WSRCA has no control over those resources and the inclusion of any references does not necessarily imply the recommendation or endorsement of same.

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5 Keys to Increase Word of Mouth Referrals in your Roofing Contracting Business

Posted By Matt Ward, Breakthrough Champion, Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Contractors, and specifically roofers rely heavily on word of mouth referrals for new  business. In fact, when I speak with contractors across the country and conduct informal  polls during my speaking sessions, I see that greater than 90% of the room indicates that  referrals are the number one source of new business for their company.

Yet, even with such high numbers and importance on referrals, less than 10% indicate that  they have a process to grow their word of mouth referrals in a much more predictable  fashion.

Most business owners tell me that their way of getting more word of mouth referrals is to  ask, however in discussions, they quickly find that asking never works. It puts the person  asked in a very difficult and uncomfortable situation of being forced to respond.  So let’s dig  into what really does work!

1. Start with a caring mindset. Word of mouth referrals are a byproduct of caring. They  are a direct result of you putting forward information and care toward others. When  you care for others, they recognize you in ways that you don’t ask for. They will  actually tell many more people about your caring nature and why they should do  business with you! When you show up constantly for others, they want your business  to be a success, as such, they refer you! You can asses how well you care about  others through a free self-assessment at www.ICanCareMore.com

2. Over Deliver - Find ways to over-deliver with your customers, partners and referral  sources. There are a number of ways to do this, including quality, time of delivery,  amount of communication, and many more.  Each business is unique in how they  operate their respective business, so you need to take a look at your business and see  how you can over-deliver in ways that are meaningful to your customers.  Consider  how you deliver your product.  Are there ways you can give your customer something  memorable?  When your product or service is a roof, that might be tough, but you  can find ways to stand out, be unique, and over deliver. In fact...I challenge you to do  just that! 

3. Listen - Listening is key to getting more referrals. When you listen to others, they  notice, because your gifts, your care, your words, and your actions show clearly that  you know them well and that you listened to them. Often when I am conducting  workshops or seminars around the country we get knee deep into the weeds of  listening and we talk about multiple ways that you can listen.  The two most common  ways to listen are with your ears and your eyes. The ears are what we know and are  used to, but the eyes, that’s a whole different approach.  Using your eyes, to listen to  what people are sharing on their personal and professional social media channels.  These posts tell you a story about who they are, and what they are about.  Using this  information you can effectively connect with these contacts on a more deeper level  and with much more intentionality.

4. Surprise - When you surprise your contacts (both customers and non-customers) you  leave an impression that is memorable, resulting in a story.  It’s these stories that  others share and creates word of mouth referrals. Consider ways that you can  surprise people, whether it’s in your operations, delivering, communication, or simply  just when they haven’t heard from you in a while, you appear, full of joy and  recognizing them!  I’ll never forget the time that I read an article by a friend, and  buried in that article was a single sentence professing her love of chocolate covered  bacon. I immediately bought some for her and shipped it to her. She then posted all  over social media about the surprise gift. Not only was she pleased that I listened to  what she was saying in her article, but she was completely surprised!  Finding ways  to surprise others is so rewarding!  I highly recommend it and it does, in fact, produce  more referrals. It did for me!

5. Non-Self Serving Acts - When you can do things for others with no intention of  gaining anything in return, it shows. The recipient will never feel like they are being  manipulated into a sales conversation, and this is key!  When you put the focus on your contact and you do things in service of them, it’s a win-win for all! One example  of how I achieve this is I give away books that I believe are helpful to others in  growing their business. This shortlist of books (4 of them) were powerful for me and  help me start, run, grow, and ultimately sell my business.  I order multiple copies of  these books and keep them on my bookshelf for easy mailing. When I ship out a  book, I write a custom note in the cover, making it personal and sharing with the  recipient why the book was helpful for me. 

Finally, stay in touch. With all 5 of these keys, what is most important is that you stay in  touch with your contacts, constantly touching base and letting them know that you are there  for them, sharing information with them, and being available.  Showing up in others lives is  keys to getting more word of mouth referrals. If you stay in touch, without asking for sales  you will get more referrals. 

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OSHA Flying into the 21st Century with Drones

Posted By Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Friday, February 15, 2019

 

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Courtesy of WSRCA Legal Counsel: Trent Cotney, Cotney Construction Law

 

 

 

Early last year, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) announced the start of an all new approach to its safety inspections—through drones. Since its introduction, at least nine inspections were conducted with camera-enabled drones. Of these nine inspections, the majority were used due to hazardous circumstances on-site such as a recent collapse, fire or explosion.

 

Drone usage during safety inspections provides OSHA with a quick and detailed view of an employer’s facility, and possibly a more expansive view of what might have been seen by an in-person inspector. While this might be good for OSHA as it significantly cuts down time needed to perform such an inspection, employers should be wary of the ramifications.

 

The good news? Drone usage for OSHA’s safety inspections doesn’t come without restriction. In an eight-page memo addressed to its regional administrators on May 18, 2018, OSHA laid out the guidelines and procedures it must adhere to in order to use Unmanned Aircraft Systems (“UAS”) a/k/a drones. One established limitation on this type of inspection is employer consent. This means that employers have the right to say no to the little robot flying above your worksite. But is “no” really the best answer?

 

Although employers have a 4th Amendment right to object to the expansion of an overbroad search, this doesn’t necessarily mean that you should deny OSHA the ability to inspect your site through drone usage. By making this objection, OSHA is then required to obtain a search warrant to inspect your property. This objection, only delaying the inevitable, might not be worth getting on OSHA’s bad side. Instead, see if you can work with OSHA to create a limit in the scope of the search and participate in the drone flight planning, which in turn will help address concerns regarding the expansive view that comes with drone inspection.

 

Another concern to watch out for is the possibility of OSHA being granted its request for a Blanket Public COA from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). This Blanket Public COA will allow OSHA to use drones anywhere in the country. If granted, it is unclear how the employer consent will play into this, if at all.

 

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LEGAL  DISCLAIMER

 

All rights reserved.  All content (text, trademarks, illustrations, reports, photos, logos, graphics, files, designs, arrangements, etc.) in this Technical Opinion (“Opinion”) is the intellectual property of Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA) and is protected by the applicable protective laws governing intellectual property. The Opinion is intended for the exclusive use by its members as a feature of their membership. This document is intended to be used for educational purposes only, and no one should act or rely solely on any information contained in this Opinion as it is not a substitute for the advice of an attorney or construction engineer with specific project knowledge. Neither WSRCA nor any of its, contractors, subcontractors, or any of their employees, directors, officers, agents, or assigns make any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or any third party’s use (or the results of such use) of any information or process disclosed in the Opinion.  Reference herein to any general or specific commercial product, process or service does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement or recommendation by WSRCA. References are provided as citations and aids to help identify and locate other resources that may be of interest, and are not intended to state or imply that WSRCA sponsors, is affiliated or associated with, or is legally responsible for the content reflected in those resources. WSRCA has no control over those resources and the inclusion of any references does not necessarily imply the recommendation or endorsement of same.

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You Are Invited to Roofing Day in D.C. 2019

Posted By Alec Ward, Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Friday, February 15, 2019


 

You Are Invited to Roofing Day in D.C. 2019


YOU NEED TO BE THERE!
Roofing Day in D.C. 2019
April 3-4
Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill
Washington, D.C.


On April 3-4, the roofing industry will come together in Washington, D.C., to meet with members of Congress on Capitol Hill. We will deliver our message about the most important legislative issues affecting the roofing industry and your business, including reducing regulatory burdens and addressing workforce shortages. We need you—and hundreds of fellow roofing professionals from all sectors of our industry—to participate to make sure our message is heard loud and clear. This is a unique and exciting opportunity as we will take over Capitol Hill and speak with one voice as a united industry!

What's included
The event includes a program with speakers and advocacy training beginning at 3 p.m. Wednesday, April 3, followed by a networking reception from 5 to 6:30 p.m. The training will prepare you for how to best communicate with members of Congress and their staffs, and you will be provided with issue papers to present to your senators and representatives. Your Congressional appointments will be scheduled for you; they will start on Thursday, April 4, at 9 a.m. and continue throughout the day. We will have a reception at a Capitol Hill restaurant that evening for those interested in unwinding and sharing stories. All you need to do is show up and join your roofing industry colleagues in delivering our message with one voice!

Who should attend
It’s important for Congress not only to hear from company owners and managers but also from frontline workers. This year, we’re introducing a special registration rate of only $25 for roof system installers. We strongly encourage you to bring one or more standout crew members to help share the industry’s story during Roofing Day in D.C. 2019. Congress needs to hear from all segments of the industry!

Register now!
Registration for Roofing Day in D.C. 2019 is only $75 for company representatives and $25 for roof system installers. Visit nrca.net/roofingday to register, make your hotel reservations and for more details. We encourage you to make your hotel reservations now, as we have a limited room block at the Hyatt Regency Washington, and it will sell out. If you have any questions, please call NRCA’s Washington, D.C., office at (800) 338-5765.

See you in D.C. April 3-4, 2019!
nrca.net/roofingday



Sincerely,
Western States Roofing Contractors Association

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Roof Coatings Review: How Chemistry Impacts Quality

Posted By George Daisey, The Dow Chemical Company, Friday, January 25, 2019

Courtesy of: George Daisey — The Dow Chemical Company

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Installing or restoring a roof can be a tremendously complicated endeavor. There are single ply membranes, roof systems, coatings, concrete, metal and many more variations to choose from, which leads anyone to ask what substrate do I choose? To add further complexity, within the coatings option alone there are a variety of product types available: silicone, acrylic, polyurethane, and asphalt? Each presents notable features, strengths, and weaknesses to consider.

 


ROOF COATINGS MARKET OVERVIEW

 

The roof coatings market in the Unites States is a growing, vibrant market. According to data from the US Census Bureau combined with Dow internal analysis, it’s estimated the total US Construction Market is valued at approximately $1.1 trillion. Roofing is a little over 1% of that total which still represents a staggering $14 billion value. Within the scope of roofing, is a bright and shining market called roof coatings. The roof coatings market is rapidly approaching 6% of the total roof market with a value of approximately $780 million (see Figure 1.). There are many factors contributing to this growth but I will mention just one: the ever-aging building inventory. As buildings get older it becomes more common that two roof systems have already been installed and doing a third roof system either means tearing the first two completely off and starting over, or applying a maintenance product like a roof coating. In terms of cost savings and less impact on the environment, roof coatings win that debate almost every time.

 

In terms of growth, all three of these market segments can be described as healthy and growing. The same sources of information describe the total construction market growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.2%. The $14 billion roofing segment is growing at 5.2% CAGR, and the roof coatings segment is humming along at a 4.7% CAGR. Compare this to the US GDP (Gross Domestic Product) which during the same period grew at a modest 2.4% CAGR. During that same period the US GDP was valued at $17.9 trillion; the US Construction market represents over 6% of the total US GDP. All these numbers simply show that these markets are large, vibrant, growing and poised to continue delivering advancements.

 

 

 

 

In fact, if we look at data spanning 2011 through 2016 we see the US roof coatings market growing at a rate of 5.2% CAGR, and that rate appears to be steadily increasing year over year. Starting from a total market value of $653 million in 2011, the growth rate has steadily increased on average to reach an annual growth rate in 2016 of 7.8% CAGR.

 

 

The two fastest growing segments in the roofing market are Thermoplastic Polyolefin (TPO) membranes and roof coatings (see Figure 2.). The tightening regulations on energy efficiency and lowering Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) have fueled demand for energy-efficient and low VOC products like TPO membranes and roof coatings.

 

Roof coatings show steady growth but indicators express the fastest growing portion of the roof coatings market is in higher performing coatings. It is easy to drive volume with lower cost products, but when growth is seen in higher value portions of a segment, there is good news for all parties. This means the customer is moving towards higher performing products that will deliver more value and longer service lifetime. The contractor is able to capture more value by selling and installing higher value products, and the manufacturer is also benefiting by offering the contractor higher value and higher performing products.

 

 

WHY CHOOSE A ROOF COATING

 

With so many choices for roofing, why would you choose a roof coating? There is no one answer to this question. Roof coatings come in many varieties not limited to water-based, solvent-based, reflective, non-reflective, thick-film, thin-film, white, black and all colors in between. Where do I start?

 

First, let’s answer the question posed above; why choose a roof coating? The first answer that often comes to mind is sustainability. In the United States alone, more than 251 million pounds of waste finds its way to landfills and nearly 40% of that waste comes from construction projects1. According to a Construction and Demolition Recycling article published in March 2018, global construction waste will double from the 1.3 billion ton total in 2012 to 2.2 billion tons by 2025. Identifying volumes of particular waste products is often difficult due to the variety of classes assigned to waste products; although certain roofing materials like shingles, asphalt and concrete are often mentioned in published waste studies.

 

If we truly want to offer sustainable products that make a difference to our environment, roof coatings are a great way to accomplish this objective. The application of a roof coating can extend the life of an existing roof and minimize the need to tear off a roof and send those materials to a landfill. In fact, whether the roof coating installation is new or retrofit, regularly scheduled recoating of that roof can reduce the need to landfill the original roofing assembly and lead to a viable solution for that roof. Looking for a sustainable solution? Then roof coatings are your answer!

 

How about sustainability from the standpoint of energy consumption? Energy efficiency is becoming more important to everyone. From the building owner dealing with utility bills to the occupants dealing with comfort level of the built environment, energy efficiency and performance of buildings is important. One of the most impactful jobs I ever participated in was a production facility where the building owner needed eight HVAC units to cool the building and office areas still never reached below 76 degrees. The roof was a black surface and the owner hired a contractor to convert the roof to a reflective surface by applying a reflective roof coating. After the installation, the owner stated that he was able to shut down three of the HVAC units and maintain a comfortable 72 degrees in the office spaces. That’s a win for everyone involved from contractor to owner to occupant.

 

Climate change is a hot topic almost everywhere you go, from construction sites to conference room meetings; even to your social media conversations. Everyone is talking about climate change, the environment and our planet. We all want to live better. Whether you believe reports of global warming, global cooling, and climate change or subscribe to none of it, constructing sustainable buildings and saving energy enables us to build a better future. Roof coatings can be a huge part of any sustainable, energy efficient building design project.

 

A building owner or other key decision-maker is often confronted with the choice of maintenance versus capital investment for a roofing project. A capital investment often means the cost of that roof installation is depreciated over many years; whereas a maintenance project can often be deducted in the same tax year. Most roof coatings installations fall under the maintenance category which allows the building owner to deduct the costs immediately. Note, tax laws change frequently; always check with your tax advisor to verify. This life cycle cost analysis compares two roof maintenance scenarios to demonstrate the value of roof maintenance.

 

Easy – and quiet – installation is a winner and roof coatings can deliver this in almost every situation. When a tear-off and complete roof assembly installation is done, there is often major disruption of building activities as well as areas around the building. Large trucks hauling materials in and waste out.

 

Sections of the parking lots cornered off to allow for trucks and materials to be moved and stored. Let’s not forget the dust and debris generated during construction. But many roof coatings jobs can be done in “stealth mode.” Buckets, drums or even totes of roof coatings can be delivered to a job site and transported up to the roof without many people aware that it is happening. I’ve personally been on jobs where the buckets are transported up a service elevator to the roof and the occupants do not know the roof is being coated!

 

We choose products because we want them to perform well. Roof coatings not only protect the existing roof and extend its service life, but roof coatings can deliver measurable performance. A roof coating may offer one or more of the following performance benefits: extended service life, water resistance, waterproofing, enhanced solar reflectivity and/or thermal emittance. Often, a roof coating enhances the appearance as well be transforming a dingy, dirty roof into beautiful colors ranging from basic white or black to a variety of highly decorative shades.

 

Selecting a roof coating for its variety of benefits is a first step. Now comes the hard part – which type of roof coating do I choose? Let’s explore some of the most common options on the market today, including their benefits, challenges and typical service life.

 

 

ACRYLIC

 

Acrylic roof coatings can be based on 100% acrylic or styrene-acrylic copolymers. Focusing on 100% acrylic roof coatings, these coatings offer excellent durability as well as the following typical properties: UV resistance, good permeance, dirt resistance, water resistance, and abrasion resistance. Acrylic coatings are water-based, easy to apply, easy to cleanup, and cure times can be tunable from several hours down to several minutes. Acrylic coatings are often installed as coating-only, but a growing sub-segment of acrylic coatings is as part of a liquid-applied membrane. Those familiar with acrylic decorative paints are familiar with a wide color palette, but for roof coatings that can vary. Steep slope thin film roof coatings can be supplied in a diverse color palette, but low slope elastomeric acrylic roof coatings are limited to white or light pastel colors. Deeper colors in these elastomeric coatings are possible to formulate but these colors often do not hold pigment as well, which leads to other technologies being used when deep colors are required. Acrylic roof coatings are limited to good weather conditions during installation because they are water-based. Excessive humidity or extreme temperatures can limit the success of an acrylic roof coating installation. Constant exposure to ponded water is also challenging for most acrylic roof coatings, resulting in impaired adhesion, blistering and delamination. However, the formulating space for acrylic roof coatings is wide; hence coatings can be formulated into anything from an economy coating up to an exceptionally high performing, durable coating. This variety makes acrylic roof coatings a great choice for the contractor looking for anything from an economical, low service life roofing solution up to a multi-decade lifetime roofing solution.

 

 

STYRENE-ACRYLIC

 

Styrene-Acrylic copolymers are a subset of the acrylic roof coating technology and should be treated separately. At a fundamental level, the styrene monomer is not as UV stable as the acrylic monomers used in roof coatings. Combining styrene with acrylic monomers to form a styrene-acrylic copolymer can deliver good performance properties; however, notably high performance is difficult to achieve versus the juggernaut of acrylic-acrylic copolymer interactions. In the roof coatings market, styrene-acrylic coatings are usually found in the economy space or in the lower warranty products. The good news is that styrene-acrylic roof coatings do have some notable performance properties, including excellent adhesion to metal and concrete and re-coats over existing acrylic roof coatings.

 

 

SILICONE 

 

Silicone roof coatings are all the buzz in the roof coatings industry. These coatings are not water-based and come in either low solids (~67%) or high solids (~98%) formulations. Silicone roof coatings are extremely resistant to water absorption, with some products literally having 0% water absorption according to standard ASTM D471 tests. The silicone polymers used in these coatings are UV light stable, do not degrade when exposed to sunlight, and thus offer one of the highest service life guarantees of any coatings option per installation. For commercial roofing, ponded water areas are the most challenging space on a roof for any coating, but silicone roof coatings are specially designed to perform well in those high moisture situations. A few challenges do exist for silicone roof coatings; including the need for primers over most surfaces, poor asphalt bleed resistance, difficulty to recoat, and low abrasion resistance. However the long service life and water resistance make the silicone roof coating a popular choice for low slope commercial roofing. Due to the slippery nature of the surface on a silicone roof coating, they are often not recommended for steep slope roofs.

 

 

POLYURETHANE 

 

Polyurethane (PU) chemistry delivers some noteworthy properties versus the coatings already discussed. A PU roof coating will often offer exceptionally high tensile strength and elongation versus other technologies. In situations where high tensile strength, toughness and chemical resistance are desired, PU roof coatings are an excellent choice. Adhesion and water resistance are often very good with PU roof coatings. It is important to note that PU coatings can come in either aromatic or aliphatic type chemistries. Only the aliphatic type are UV stable and offer long-term durability. These coatings are solvent-based and do need specialized spray equipment separate from either silicone or acrylic.

 

 

ASPHALT

 

Asphalt coatings are the oldest technology discussed in this article. The use of asphalt can be traced back to the ancient cultures like Greece and Babylon2. In fact, the earliest known use of asphalt dates back to around 615 B.C. when King Nabopolassar paved the streets of Babylon with asphalt and burned brick so he could have easy access in and out of his palace. In modern day roof coatings, asphalt coatings come in a variety of forms. There is traditional hot mop asphalt where the solid asphalt is heated and melted before being rolled or broomed onto a roof. Newer versions of this black color coating are in emulsion form where the asphalt is emulsified in water either through mixing with surfactants or high pressure processes. Further differentiation is between traditional black asphalt coatings and the newer silver or reflective asphalt coatings. Both in solvent and water-based emulsion form, the reflective asphalt coatings fit in a niche space between non –reflective and highly reflective roofing products. Hot mop asphalt and cold-applied asphalt emulsion are often applied to the roof as the waterproofing layer. With their near-zero permeance and hydrophobicity, there is no better waterproofing coating for roofing than asphalt coatings. These basecoat/primer coatings can then be top-coated with reflective aluminized asphalt or acrylic roof coatings. In some cases, the desire is to have a black surface so the asphalt coating is the final coat as well. The reflective aluminized asphalt coatings have good solar reflectivity and low thermal emissivity giving them a significant energy value proposition. Lifetime expectancy of aluminized roof coatings have improved over earlier incarnation of the technology due to improved formulation quality and refinement of the aluminum flake. In climates or situations where both very high reflectivity and emissivity are not desired, the moderate energy performance of the aluminized roof coatings can be the best choice.

 

 

SEBS 

 

Styrene Ethylbutylene Styrene or SEBS coatings are solvent-based coatings that offer excellent water resistance and very low permeance. Often SEBS is positioned against acrylic roof coatings as having an extended season of use; not as subject to the cold temperatures encountered in the shoulder seasons. SEBS coatings can be described as super-hydrophobic and will have a moderate service life versus silicone or acrylic roof coatings. The challenges for SEBS coatings include high VOCs and limited color option; typically only sold in white according to leading distributors of the product.

 

 

POLYUREA

 

Polyurea roof coatings are a very small percentage of the roof coatings market, but they offer an excellent property balance and can be the right choice for many roofs. Polyurea roof coatings are great waterproofers, have excellent chemical, abrasion and corrosion resistance and have an extended application season versus water-based systems. Some of the challenges are high VOCs and the reactive chemistry. An acrylic roof coating will dry by evaporation of water typically over a few hours, whereas the polyurea chemistry is reactive causing the coating to cure in a matter of seconds. The applicator must have a high skill set to spray this type of coating. Exterior durability is moderate, but long service life is never the driver for polyurea coatings; it is usually the chemical resistance or waterproofing properties that drive the use of polyurea.

 

 

PVDF

 

Polyvinylidene Fluoride or PVDF coatings are different from the previously discussed coatings in many ways. First, they are not applied to commercial roofs in thick films. Often a PVDF roof coating is applied at 2 to 4 dry mils thick. The cost per pound of a PVDF coating is much higher than other technologies, but is counter-balanced by the performance it can deliver in a thinner film. The benefits of PVDF over other coatings include improved dirt pickup resistance, long-term reflectivity, long-term durability, water repellency and mildew/algae resistance. Colors are no challenge for PVDF as they can be supplied in a diverse color palette. The main challenge is balancing the hardness and toughness of the PDVF coating versus the flexibility of the elastomeric basecoats often applied before the PVDF coating. PVDF coatings have advanced over the years and though earlier versions suffered from cracking issues, newer offerings have improved their crack resistance. It is always a challenge to apply a hard, rigid coating over a soft flexible coating, which must be understood by the contractor/applicator.

 

 

CONCLUSION

 

There are a diverse variety of roof coating technologies available in the North American market. Each roof coating technology has its noteworthy balance of properties and features that need to be understood by the buyer and user to determine the best option for intended use. Beyond roof coating product properties, type of substrate, service life, maintenance planning, sustainability benefits, and cost are considerable factors to help the coating chosen to meet the needs of the job.

 

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1 Mike Hower, Marketing Communications Manager, Carbon Lighthouse, 2013

 

2 https://actionasphalt.net/storied-history-asphalt-pavement/

 

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LEGAL  DISCLAIMER

All rights reserved.  All content (text, trademarks, illustrations, reports, photos, logos, graphics, files, designs, arrangements, etc.) in this Technical Opinion (“Opinion”) is the intellectual property of Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA) and is protected by the applicable protective laws governing intellectual property. The Opinion is intended for the exclusive use by its members as a feature of their membership. This document is intended to be used for educational purposes only, and no one should act or rely solely on any information contained in this Opinion as it is not a substitute for the advice of an attorney or construction engineer with specific project knowledge. Neither WSRCA nor any of its, contractors, subcontractors, or any of their employees, directors, officers, agents, or assigns make any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or any third party’s use (or the results of such use) of any information or process disclosed in the Opinion.  Reference herein to any general or specific commercial product, process or service does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement or recommendation by WSRCA. References are provided as citations and aids to help identify and locate other resources that may be of interest, and are not intended to state or imply that WSRCA sponsors, is affiliated or associated with, or is legally responsible for the content reflected in those resources. WSRCA has no control over those resources and the inclusion of any references does not necessarily imply the recommendation or endorsement of same.

 

Tags:  TECHNICAL 

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OSHA Updates Final Crane Operator Ruling

Posted By Western States Roofing Contractors Association, Monday, January 21, 2019

 

Courtesy of Trent Cotney, Cotney Construction Law

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Per OSHA’s publication in the Federal Register on November 9, 2018, the requirements for crane operator certification will take effect on December 10, 2018, and the requirements for employers to evaluate/document crane operators will take effect on February 7, 2019.

Further, OSHA stated that the new crane operator certification will be limited to certification based on equipment type and that OSHA will not be enforcing the requirement that certifications identify a lifting capacity for the certification. This decision was made in order to maintain current industry practices and avoid confusion on construction projects. The decision and effective dates mean all crane operators must be certified by December 10 of this year and all employers must begin evaluating and documenting the evaluations by February 7, 2019.

While testing organizations, such as the National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators (NCCCO), are not required to issue certifications rated by lifting capacity, they are still permitted to do so. Crane operators will need to ensure they meet the minimum operator requirements outlined in the rule, 29 CFR 1926.1427. The rule requires employers to ensure crane operators receive training, evaluate operators for their ability to safely operate crane equipment, and document the evaluation.

In sum, employers and crane operators must act fast to ensure they both meet the new criteria set forth by OSHA. Exactly how OSHA will enforce the new requirement is yet to be seen but employers should be ready and have guidelines in place for project inspections.

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LEGAL  DISCLAIMER

All rights reserved.  All content (text, trademarks, illustrations, reports, photos, logos, graphics, files, designs, arrangements, etc.) in this Technical Opinion (“Opinion”) is the intellectual property of Western States Roofing Contractors Association (WSRCA) and is protected by the applicable protective laws governing intellectual property. The Opinion is intended for the exclusive use by its members as a feature of their membership. This document is intended to be used for educational purposes only, and no one should act or rely solely on any information contained in this Opinion as it is not a substitute for the advice of an attorney or construction engineer with specific project knowledge. Neither WSRCA nor any of its, contractors, subcontractors, or any of their employees, directors, officers, agents, or assigns make any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or any third party’s use (or the results of such use) of any information or process disclosed in the Opinion.  Reference herein to any general or specific commercial product, process or service does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement or recommendation by WSRCA. References are provided as citations and aids to help identify and locate other resources that may be of interest, and are not intended to state or imply that WSRCA sponsors, is affiliated or associated with, or is legally responsible for the content reflected in those resources. WSRCA has no control over those resources and the inclusion of any references does not necessarily imply the recommendation or endorsement of same.

Tags:  LEGAL  SAFETY 

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