It’s well known that the COVID-19 lockdowns in Australia and the pandemic itself have had a serious ripple effect on businesses across the board. The pandemic certainly changed the way the world worked and the Australian plumbing industry has been affected in a big way.
Businesses have been under significant financial pressure, causing them to let go of many workers. And, as these enterprises shut down, there has been a dramatic decline in the flow of work into the plumbing industry. Many businesses and staff have reported having survived multiple recessions, but this pandemic has been the hardest for them.
Throughout the pandemic, plumbers have faced many other related issues that affected their work and working conditions. For example, the shortage of PPE across the world has had made it difficult for the industry to get the right protective gear. When a shortage of toilet paper occurred, plumbers began to receive more service calls as people flushed other materials such as wipes into toilets.
Here we take a look at the impact the pandemic has had on the country’s plumbing industry.
Corona Virus Mandates
The limitations placed on work conditions triggered by social distancing regulations have made the biggest impact on how plumbers can carry out their work.
While the government has made it mandatory for everyone to maintain a minimum distance from each other in order to reduce the risk of spreading infection, this has affected how plumbers operate day-to-day. From sharing a ride to site to lunch breaks, all aspects of the daily life of plumbers have been affected.
Despite the difficulties, companies such as SPS Plumbers Sydney have adapted to these health measures and follow them carefully to ensure the safety of all involved.
Impact on Different Sectors
The impact of the pandemic has been felt in different sectors of the plumbing industry in different ways and to varying degrees. Major commercial projects have been slowed down or completely halted to adhere to the social distancing needs. Since non-essential office and retail businesses have been closed, this has also affected the industry. However, the maintenance and servicing sector has not seen as many changes in terms of workload.
Most plumbers are well aware of the importance of the use of PPE and taking care of hygiene during their everyday routine. This means that many of the mandates have been adapted. The need to prevent the virus from spreading has further increased the importance of regularly maintaining HVAC, water, and sanitary systems.
Badly Affected Sectors
There have been sectors within the plumbing industry that have been badly affected. Many factors have contributed to plumbing operations reducing their staff or halting operations on a temporary basis. This includes:
- Project cancellation
- Project postponement
- Slow process for building permits
There have been a number of economic stimulus packages from the government to help businesses stay afloat, and the JobKeeper program is one example. Employers that suffered a reduction in their turnover due to COVID-19 were able to receive $1500 per employee (to be passed onto the employee) every fortnight. The government also increased the limit for instant asset write-off for assets installed/ready for first use.