In the first of our Q&A series, we catch up with Mark McGettigan, Editor of Installer Magazine, to get his views on the challenges the HVAC( Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning) industry is facing and what he feels the biggest challenges plumbers are facing.
Q) How long have you been working in the Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning industry?
A) I started at Installer in late 2009 – so nearly seven years. Before that, I was the editor of a snowboard magazine.
Q) What’s the biggest change you’ve seen during this time?
A) I think it’s the view of renewables. When I started everyone was very excited about them and I remember sitting in a seminar in which the speaker said to a room of installers – ‘If you don’t get into renewables, you won’t have a business in five years.’ Unfortunately, that statement turned out to be very wide of the mark – and so much if that early interest has died away.
Q) What’s the future?
A) From the industry’s perspective, I think it’s ‘smart’ – smart controls especially are getting a lot of attention. But – in terms of the heating engineer on the ground – I think the future has to be raising public awareness of the valuable work they do. We need to work harder to root out illegal work.
Q) Why do you think people should consider a career in Heating, Ventilation or Air Conditioning?
A) Because I think it has the potential to be very rewarding. The days of a trade being a fall-back for those who didn’t get on at school are gone. Meeting lots of installers, it’s clear that there are many opportunities to develop a business in different ways and different areas – but the thing that unites them is pride in a job well done and a satisfied customer.
Q) What’s your favourite tool?
A) From my perspective, probably a laptop. But who doesn’t love a Scandinavian butt chisel?
Q) Tell us your worst joke
A) Not sure. Could be the one about the Scandinavian Butt Chisel…
Q) How many medals will GB get at the Paralympics?
A) I’m hoping for more than last time, which was 120. 121?
Q) Football or rugby?
A) I play football but I prefer to watch rugby.
Q) What’s in store for Installer magazine next year?
A) I think it’s time we started to be more pro-active within the industry – through the magazine, website, social media and our live events, we can do more than simply report the latest news.
Q) What’s the biggest challenge for Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning installers?
A) Staying in business. There’s a constant challenge to win new work, retain existing customers and maximise every opportunity. Not every homeowner values quality over price…