The trends that shape our industry are changing at a faster pace than ever before.

The regulatory environment around efficiency, electrification and grid enablement has seen unprecedented change in recent years, with more to come. At the same time, homeowners have more information easily accessible to them than ever before. Combined with the ongoing rapid development of product technology, the result is a long-term transformation of residential water and space heating products and services.

Monitoring that transformation must be an ongoing priority throughout the industry. At Bradford White, we have invested in efforts to track the local, state and national policies and initiatives that directly impact the PHCP industry and our customers, including electrification, decarbonization, renewable energy, energy storage and emerging technologies.

As the regulatory environment grows increasingly complex, so does product technology. Thanks to a wealth of new technology solutions, such as heat pump water heaters, tankless water heaters and smart connection technology, an array of new options are available to consumers.

Widespread technological innovation is amplified by the amount of information consumers have at their fingertips. Blogs, consumer websites, technical materials and social media guide homeowners more than ever. The sheer amount of information immediately available to anyone has quickly altered the dynamic between consumers and service providers, leaving contractors searching for solutions.

Manufacturers are in a unique position to offer their contractor customers new tools and resources to effectively respond to these new conditions. We must provide our contractor customers with an entirely new set of tools that empower them to sell and service our products. That includes training on our new high-efficiency products as well as digital learning resources to enhance the traditional, foundational training that is the strength of this industry.

In addition to technical training, manufacturers must serve as partners to help contractors connect in a meaningful way with their customers. It’s more important than ever that industry professionals build trust with their customers in order to grow their business. Our goal is to provide resources and tools that help the professional contractor establish relationships with homeowners to effectively inform and educate them on our products and services.

When they can effectively share their expertise, homeowners will gain confidence in the industry and share their positive experience.

While marketing and branding play a large role in distilling complex ideas down to simple, easy to understand messaging, how companies treat their customers is the ultimate method of communication. By truly understanding the business needs of contractors in the field, manufacturers can demonstrate their value to contractors. When we’re connected to the latest regulatory insights and product innovation, we can anticipate the needs of our customers. In turn, they can offer expertise and feedback in addition to reliable technical service.

That’s how we all work together. Selling products isn’t enough. Customer satisfaction is the result of building relationships and partnerships based on trust at every level of the industry. And customer satisfaction in today’s shifting landscape finally comes down to service. The customer service muscle needs to be flexed across the whole industry in order to deliver homeowners everything they expect and deserve: service, quality, performance, convenience and value.