How a local property developer used web-based solutions to adapt to COVID-19
3rd December 2020
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Maplevale Homes is a Staffordshire-based housebuilder specialising in small to medium size developments across the county and into Derbyshire and Leicestershire. They build a mix of large and medium-size family homes, single dwellings, apartments and bungalows, and in partnership with local Housing Associations have a genuine commitment to providing affordable housing as part of their portfolio.

When the pandemic hit early in 2020, they quickly adapted to the challenges of operating under COVID-safe conditions; on-site practices were amended, appropriate PPE and sanitising equipment was sourced, and office-based staff were provided with additional IT resources to enable them to work from home.

As their incumbent web provider, Spectrum Web Products helped them in two specific areas, one of which contributed to COVID-safe site operations and the other which assisted the sales process given that showhome visits were at various stages either heavily restricted or not allowed at all.

Smart Webforms for site access

One of the first things we provided was a suite of smart webforms supported by QR codes to replace the visitors books on each site. Given that it is not COVID-safe for employees, contractors and other visitors to go into the site office to sign in, we set up a system where on arrival at site visitors scan a QR code with their own mobile phone, and submit their name and contact details in a simple  webform; on leaving site they repeat the process.

The form submissions are stored online and can be easily retrieved at any point in time, enabling Maplevale Homes to fulfil this important Health & Safety function without any compromise to social distancing. Archiving and cleansing this data for GDPR purposes is also very straightforward.

In addition to the web forms, the pages connected via the QR codes also contain full COVID-safe site instructions so all visitors to site not only sign in and out in a safe manner, but also have ready access to the working practices to follow while on site.

Virtual tours for home sales

Given that showhome visits are also difficult to operate in a COVID-safe manner, we have also provided Maplevale Homes with a suite of virtual showhome tours. Using specialist images provided by our partner Rali Studios, we created an interactive 360 degrees view that gives a virtual walk-through of a finished home from room to room. You can see an example here.

These virtual tours have proved to be really well-used, with hundreds of visits per month from prospective homebuyers – significantly more than could be achieved during normal operating circumstances, let alone under COVID restrictions.

What the client said:

Richard Kirkland, Managing Director of Maplevale Homes, said:

“Spectrum Web Products have been looking after our online services since 2015. We have found them to be reliable, proactive and flexible, always willing to respond to our changing business needs - and we are really pleased with our website! Their additional support during the COVID pandemic has been invaluable.”

Can we help you with our web solutions?

If you’d like to discuss the possibilities of using web-based solutions such as smart web forms or 360 degree virtual tours to support your business operations, we’d love to hear from you.

Visit Spectrum Web Products for more information.

About the Author

Kevin W

Member since: 1st October 2020

Lichfield born and bred, attended Chadsmead Infants & Juniors and Friary Grange.

Set up Spectrum Web Products in 2008 providing web, e-commerce & IT solutions to small businesses, charities and local...

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