Continuously upskilling the damage management industry

Date: 13th June 2018
Author: BDMA

Building materials and technologies are ever evolving. Consequently, the ways in which the damage management industry develops to meet the standards and requirements of the wider supply chain needs continuous improvement.

The expectations of customers and policyholders are that with evolutionary building materials and smart technology comes higher quality restorations, within quicker completion times. However, the success of a project ultimately begins and ends with the expertise of the technician. When recovering or restoring a building or even a valuable artefact, solutions can vary immensely. There is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to damage management. This is not new insight, but perhaps a thought which often gets overlooked.

So, what do industry standards look like?

The British Damage Management Association (BDMA) facilitates technical and corporate training, technical support and advice on standards and represents its members’ interests in the public, industry and commercial domains. Accreditation is at the heart of the BDMA’s structure and sets the standard of how professionals in damage management and related sectors can prove their competence and commitment to delivering industry best practice.

Here, we share the key benefits of continuously upskilling professionals in the industry to mirror the quality standards and expectations of the entire supply chain.


Raising industry standards

If professional practitioners have access to continuous education, including the latest scientific and technical developments, they are in a prime position to deliver industry best practice.

The BDMA has built its own standards to provide a protocol framework for the delivery of best practice; from notification of an incident through to completion of agreed restoration works. This allows for the incorporation of the most appropriate techniques, to provide a professional and satisfactory outcome for all parties involved. It is a code of practice for the organisation and management of the stabilisation, mitigation and restoration of properties, contents, facilities and assets following damage.

The BDMA also worked with BSI to develop the BS12999, the British Standard for Damage Management, published in November 2015. It provides a code of practice that can be followed by damage management practitioners and acts as a source of reference for third parties, incident owners, businesses and members of the public. The BSI’s decision to develop a standard for damage management recognised a need for a common framework for the organisation and management of property recovery and restoration following incident damage. Practical and theoretical training is then essential to continue to bring these industry standards to the forefront.

Furthermore, technicians present themselves with the opportunity to be deservedly recognised by maintaining high standards. With advanced education to improve site knowledge, techniques and health and safety (to list a few), technicians will make better on-site decisions. This builds a community of experts in the field, who offer intellectual value and specialist knowledge, and who are better regarded within the supply chain.


A comprehensive service for customers and policyholders

Where damage is widespread, or causes a major impact, the claims response is likely to involve several parties within the supply chain, each with varying roles and responsibilities and levels of authority.

An unexperienced approach and use of unprofessional techniques can lead to further damage, service recalls, and health and safety risks for policyholders. They could face needless distress such as future unwarranted restoration costs or an extensive claim life cycle. Whilst customers could face excessive pay outs.

A professional and high-quality claim response will counteract these factors – presenting customers and policyholders with an inclusive solution.

A standardised certification, such as the BDMA, delivers on the quality service expectations that customers and service users should receive. With technicians consistently developing knowledge and technical skill, the whole supply chain can have enhanced confidence that standards are abided and being managed. This builds trust amongst service users and excels damage management business reputation, which is critical in a regulated industry.