Challenge and opportunity

IKO are providing quality training to support roofing contractors. If you are a registered IKO contractor the opportunities are out there.

Flat, pitched, new build or refurbishment – whatever project you’re working on there’s no doubt that roofing has a range of products and skillsets to get to grips with. Some, such as hot works, require specialist knowledge, other products need more experience or training. While this can mean that roofing is more susceptible to skills shortages, it also means there’s a lot of opportunity out there if you’re prepared to take on jobs and step outside of your comfort zone.

The more familiar you are with your market and the products available, the more likely you are to fit appropriately and sell – and with a bigger margin too. You just need to pick a quality product to support you. For example, for projects unsuited to hot works, liquid applied roofing systems, EPDM systems and self-adhesive membranes are all cold applications – however you must ensure these are high quality alternatives and the performance suits the job.

Roofing felt performance can also vary enormously, ranging from commodity ‘5 year’ shed felt options to 10 and 20 year systems used on house extensions, garages, and commercial projects. The bottom line is it’s never good to follow a formula, as the most obvious answer may not be right; stop and consider your product solution and you’re more likely to get a professional outcome, particularly if it’s a type of job you do less frequently.

To help you pick a quality product that’s right for the job IKO has several training centres around the country. The company aims to offer approved and registered IKO roofers and contractors a product for every roofing project and the support and training they need to fit it. In addition, their technical support team provides advice on specification and site engineers inspect projects before and after a system has been installed by their approved contractors.

The training uses special rigs to familiarise contractors with installation and application techniques for particular products, tools, good practice and health and safety. When you combine all that with clearer packaging and instructions, design guide brochures and installation videos – it’s clear IKO are playing a key role in supporting the skills needed for the whole industry.

IKO’s range includes built-up flat roofing systems, pitched roof systems, roofing shingles, liquids and compounds. They recently launched the innovative IKO Enertherm Insulation Board and two new torch-on products: the cost-effective TGX system and the premium Britorch Modified Cap Sheet, which has a 20 year guarantee and can be used with IKO’s existing underlays.