Demand for the floor inspection services and maintenance programmes provided by concrete flooring solutions provider Concrete Laser Flooring (CLF) has doubled in the last six months as companies grow increasingly aware of the importance of basing operations on solid ground, says CLF manager Angus Ryan.
“Traditionally, flooring has been an overlooked aspect of a company’s operations, but, in the past five years, we have seen clients take the first steps to understanding the fundamental impact of their floors and how they can contribute to – or hinder – their business goals. Without a good foundation, the operational efficiency of a business is compromised.”
Ryan notes that modern business technologies are imperative to facilitating fast and accurate processes, and to delivering results within the limits of strict business timeframes and precise strategies. However, he points out that it is futile to develop business systems based on the latest high-technology systems, while failing to ensure that the floor is in a condition to support such activities.
Flawed floors can result in significant cost incurrence, owing to damage to stock and expensive plant equipment, such as forklifts, while compromising employee safety, he adds.
In response to several enquiries to meet with clients to undertake assessments of their warehouse and hard stand concrete floors, CLF – a member of construction products provider the AfriSam Group – introduced two service offerings in 2012 to specifically help companies in the fast-moving consumer goods, and warehousing and logistics sectors, to maximise operating efficiency through their floors.
CLF’s preoccupation inspection service involves a detailed inspection of the floor for tenants and landlords to establish a base line from which to measure the condition of the floor during and at completion of occupancy, while the company’s standard floor inspection service involves a detailed inspection at an existing facility.
“We look to identify and explain the hidden costs and benefits associated with floors and help companies understand how this element of their facilities can impact on their businesses. Our technicians document and measure the repairs needed and provide a quote of the associated costs. From there, we can also devise a maintenance programme for the client’s consideration.”
Ryan highlights that it is important to consider the floor during the initial design-phase of a facility and as an ongoing area for maintenance. “Too often, companies are aware of the capital cost of a floor at the start of a project, but forget to consider the ongoing operational costs associated with a bad floor.”
Cognisant of the market’s needs, CLF has employed a proactive market strategy to target existing and prospective clients, and communicate the importance of good flooring; it has also ensured that clients are engaged throughout the inspection process.
CLF also has repair and modification teams throughout South Africa, who attend to the various requirements identified during the inspections. These teams are equipped to attend to several repairs, including crack repair, joint repair and sealing and rocking panel repair, as well as grinding, polishing, patching and ramp building. They can also perform full floor replacements and re-establishments, or break-out and reinstate sections of floors.
CLF completed a project in August at the New Horizon waste-to-energy facility in Athlone, Cape Town, assisting in designing and installing a ramp barrier system on an existing concrete floor to stop organic waste leachate from exiting the building.
Ryan notes that the facility had to remain fully operational for the majority of the project, which meant that the preparation of the floor for breaking out and installing the ramps had to be completed within a short time. Weekly operations also had to be carried out without affecting the curing of concrete laid over weekends.
CLF was also appointed by quantity surveyors JMHT Quantity Surveyors this year to design, supply and laser-place a seamless 200-mm-thick, fibre-reinforced concrete floor for distribution services provider Value Logistics, in Cape Town. The project required that 23 000 m2 be replaced, with panel sizes averaging 1 000 m2 each.