Starting early and bringing in the new: London Seamless Flat Roofing boss speaks about keeping his firm at the forefront of the industry

Published by Rhys Taylor-Brown on January 6th 2021, 1:01pm

London Seamless Flat Roofing Ltd is a company known for using the latest in technological developments within the roofing industry. Based in Brentford and operating mostly in London and the southeast of England, the business waterproofs new builds and refurbished builds in the commercial sector using a non-flame method, which is more appealing to clients due to the reduced risk of fires. The firm was one of the first to use the non-flame method and has since accumulated a wealth of experience in applying it, consolidating its success in a period of over ten years in the sector, during which it has won numerous awards in recognition of its work.

Speaking to The Parliamentary Review, managing director Rafal Drabik revealed that the business had been able to enjoy such success because it was proactive in bedding down early within a rapidly expanding industry, and has kept innovation at the forefront of its work, including embracing the non-flame method when it came about.

Drabik said: “We were founded in 2005 as a roofing liquid specialist. This was once a niche market, but we’ve since seen it grow to become a much larger industry.

“The key to keeping us ahead of the curve is that we are, and have been for many years, at the cutting edge of technology having started early in a growing sector. With our expertise, we can support clients from the very beginning all the way through to completion. Our waterproofing works always meet the key standards of being on time, cost-effective and performed well. By working with companies with a global reputation, we are able to deliver high-quality, high-performance work for our clients.”

Drabik believes that thanks to London Seamless Flat Roofing’s willingness to engage early in the market, the company has become vastly more experienced than several of its competitors and culminated in much positive recognition for its work.

He explained: “Because of our early entry in this market, we have accumulated a great deal of experience. Indeed, since our founding, we have completed work on over 140,000 square metres of roofs, balconies and walkways using liquid waterproofing systems. The work we have done over the years has been recognised. In 2011, our staff were given a team award by Sika Liquid Plastics Technical Field Services for their excellent quality workmanship and performance.”

Furthermore, Drabik emphasised that the firm’s standing as a small business does not deter his team from taking up involvement in large and more ambitious projects either.

“Although we are a small company with ten employees, we nevertheless work on large projects. In the years 2007, 2009 and 2011, we were awarded Project of the Year.”

While starting out in the industry early paved the way for the company to accumulate a wealth of experience, Drabik explained that his team were determined to put that experience to the best possible use and, through it, determine which new methods of application for roofing systems could be integrated into its work. Armed with this expertise, Drabik and his team recognised that many traditional methods required the use of gas torches, burners under bitumen boilers and hot air or hot gas guns, all of which pose a risk to the building as well as health and safety concerns for installers and building occupants.

Considering that the sector is largely governed by increasing health and safety regulations, Drabik believed that the relatively unknown non-flame application method could provide an innovative answer and by bringing this into the forefront of his firm’s work could help distinguish it from the wider market.

He recalled: “We distinguish ourselves in the market by specialising in the no-flame liquid method for flat roofs, meaning that we also perform work on walkways, gutters, and balconies. When I founded this company in 2005, the non-flame method was relatively unknown and not widely used. Since 2013, it has grown by more than 30 per cent, which - according to the Liquid Roofing and Waterproofing Association - makes it the most rapidly growing part of the roofing market as of 2018.

“The LRWA also reports that over the same period, its membership nearly doubled, and the collective turnover of its members increased by 35 per cent. In short, it is a rapidly expanding industry. Indeed, it is safe to say that today it is now the main roofing system - something spurred on to a large extent by health and safety regulations.”

The business’ willingness to bring the latest technologies into its activities help it keep ahead of the curve, buoyed by the experience Drabik and his team have built up having started out in the sector early on. This combination of starting out quickly and being more willing than any to embrace the new is likely to hold London Seamless Flat Roofing in good stead for years to come.

Furthermore, the company has been boosted by news that under the government’s new points-based immigration system which has come into force this year, applicants for a visa must have proof of a job offer with a minimum salary of £25,600 or the going rate for their industry. This figure is reduced from the government’s initial plans early in 2020 to set the salary threshold at £30,000, with the choice to ultimately lower that threshold meaning that more medium-skill migrant workers will qualify for entry to the UK.

This is likely to help ensure that workforces can be maintained post-Brexit while boosting sectors like the construction industry which are blighted by longstanding skills shortages.

While the UK’s new relationship with the EU may not allow for the free exchange of labour as it has been for the previous few decades, which Drabik himself had initially hoped for, UK businesses like London Seamless Flat Roofing will still be able to tap into the bloc’s pool of talent and entice more medium and higher skilled workers to the UK.

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Authored By

Rhys Taylor-Brown
Junior Editor
January 6th 2021, 1:01pm

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