Today’s tradesmen are bucking outmoded stereotypes by being well educated, polite and open to new ideas, according to a new survey by AXA.
Furthermore, builders, plumbers and electricians are otherwise adopting the progressive mindset of a modern service industry. Unlike the “cowboy” tradesmen of yore, this new breed also understands the need for comprehensive tradesman insurance and or business insurance cover.
According to the survey:
- 80% of young tradespeople have A-Levels.
- 50% have a degree.
- 15% came from a corporate professional background.
- Only 2% started out with no formal qualifications and learnt on the job.
- 20% turned their hobby into self-employment.
- 50% came up with an original, innovative idea and based their business around that.
- 10% inherited a family business.
- 80% said they regularly took on unpaid work for the vulnerable of their community.
Unreliability, sexist behaviour and bad language are frowned upon, but still, only 10% of tradespeople are female. This may be because outdated stereotypes are still those most represented in the media, but we expect this to change over time to reflect reality.
In fact, trades like building, plumbing and electrical work are now increasingly seen as service roles. Modern tradespeople understand that when they go into people’s homes to work for them they need to be professional, reliable, punctual, smart and polite. They also understand the need for fully comprehensive insurance should anything go wrong.
When working on someone else’s property it’s vital to have public liability insurance, even if your work itself cannot be faulted. Accidental breakages can happen to anyone, especially in an unfamiliar environment, and even if you never need to use it, having such insurance shows that you are a professional.
You should also consider professional indemnity insurance if your job involves providing advice, design, specifications, specialist knowledge or you use own initiative. For instance, if you fit a kitchen for a customer that isn’t strictly in accordance with plans they provided, or if you make a suggestion with regards to a situation that in practice makes things worse, or has unforeseen consequences.
Increasingly, today’s tradespeople need to have such insurance in place as their field of employment becomes more formal and highly skilled. The cowboys are on their way out and are being replaced by a new breed of professionals who pride themselves on doing a job well and having all eventualities covered.
You may also be interested in: Auto-enrolment: the crunch is coming for small businesses