Reading Time: 6 minutes

The new industry survey reveals kitchen & bath professionals’ key frustrations, worries, inspirations and visions for the future

PLEASANT PRAIRIE, Wis.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#bathremodelHausera, a new kind of online kitchen & bath specialty retailer designed to empower homeowners and design pros with a curated shopping experience, today released the findings of its first annual “Kitchen & Bath Design Professional Insights Survey.” With the goal of identifying key trends among kitchen & bath professionals, the survey commissioned by Hausera found that a vast majority of design professionals are eager to please clients and optimistic about the future of their businesses – but key frustrations and worries remain.

The survey’s key findings include:

  • 45% of designers say “staying on budget” is a top worry in their line of work.
  • Just 1% of designers say their clients always have a clear vision of what they want for a design project.
  • 63% of design pros say achieving client satisfaction is one of the most rewarding aspects of their work.
  • Nearly half of design professionals say their business is actively engaged with Facebook, making it their most frequented social media platform.
  • 51% of design pros say they use design technology tools for their work on a regular basis; the most common tools include SketchUp, Adobe Creative Cloud and Chief Architect.
  • 55% of designers say they use finance or accounting technology tools on a regular basis to manage projects.
  • 52% of design pros say they currently network and share knowledge with industry peers to keep their skills up to date.
  • 62% of design pros say they use websites to keep track of current design trends and product developments; 47% of respondents said they use print magazines.

“Achieving client delight in the design industry can be challenging, especially for kitchen & bath professionals,” said Wesley Ward, vice president of marketing and merchandising at Hausera. “However, despite the many worries and frustrations associated with a renovation, the results of our survey show how motivated these design pros are to deliver superior results to their customers.”

The Top Worry: Staying on Budget

The survey shows that design professionals’ top worry about their work is staying on budget. Similarly, during client projects, respondents indicated that staying on budget is a significant frustration. Other notable worries keeping design professionals up at night include ensuring project quality is up to their company’s standards and finding and retaining good employees.

  • 45% of design pros say that “staying on budget” is a top worry in their line of work, followed by “ensuring their project quality is up to their company’s standards” (26%), “finding and retaining good employees” (25%), “meeting deadlines” (23%) and “managing multiple projects” (20%).
  • 36% of respondents say “managing unrealistic client expectations” is a top frustration during a design project, followed by “long lead times to receive products” (35%), “staying within budgets” (34%), “times when the client goes on their own and buys products” (30%) and “finding the right product” (23%).

Design Pros are Optimistic About Their Career and Their Business

The survey finds that despite these common worries and frustrations, nearly all design pros are optimistic about the future of their business, and almost half of them are not worried about their career.

  • 89% of design pros say they are “extremely optimistic,” “very optimistic” or “somewhat optimistic” about their career.
  • When asked what worries them the most about their career,” 49% of respondents say they are not worried about their career, followed by “having enough work to stay profitable” (23%), “not working on projects that interest/inspire them” (21%) and “not attracting the right kinds of clients” (15%).

Design Pros Agree: Clients are Fickle

The majority of design pros say their clients do not have a clear vision of what they want for design projects.

  • Just 1% of designers say their clients always have a clear vision of what they want for a design project, and only 23% of designers say their clients usually have a clear vision of what they want for a project.

Each survey respondent provided one piece of advice they would tell clients before starting a renovation project. Popular responses include:

  • Expect the unexpected and anticipate delays by adding time to the deadline
  • Communicate effectively with the design pro
  • Establish a realistic budget, be honest about your budget and expect to run over budget
  • Research, use photos for inspiration and ask questions
  • Be patient and open-minded

Achieving Client Delight: Pros are Eager to Satisfy Clients

Despite clients’ lack of direction when initiating a project, the survey uncovered that delighting clients with the finished product is their top motivator

  • 63% of design pros say achieving client satisfaction is one of the most rewarding aspects, followed by “creating beautiful and/or functional spaces” (43%), “problem solving aspect – improving design and functionality for clients” (42%), “realizing clients’ vision into reality” (29%) and “completing a project” (25%).

On Social Media, Facebook is It

Nearly half of design professionals say their business is actively engaged with Facebook, making it the most popular social media platform for pros. Trailing Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest were next of the list of common social media platforms. However, the highest percentage of design pros indicated their company is not active on social media at all.

  • 48% of design pros say their business/company is not active on social media.
  • 46% of respondents say their business/company is actively engaged on Facebook, followed by Instagram (28%) and Pinterest (17%).

Tech Tools Power Daily Business Tasks

Over half of design pros actively use finance and accounting technology tools on a daily basis. QuickBooks and QuickBooks Pro were very common responses among design professionals that use accounting and finance technology tools.

  • 55% of design pros say they use finance or accounting technology tools to do their work on a regular basis; an overwhelming majority of those that use finance and accounting tools prefer QuickBooks or QuickBooks Pro.
  • 51% of design pros say they use design technology tools for their work on a regular basis; common tools include SketchUp, Adobe Creative Cloud and Chief Architect.
  • 39% of design pros do not use technology tools on a regular basis.
  • 31% of design pros use marketing technology tools on a regular basis; common tools include Facebook and Instagram.

Key to Career Success: Networking

To keep their skills up to date, more than half of design pros say they actively network and share knowledge with their industry peers. Other top skill building activities include attending in-person seminars and workshops and attending online seminars, workshops and webinars.

  • 52% of design pros say they currently network and share knowledge with industry peers to keep their skills up to date, and 41% say this is one of the most valuable ways to enhance their skills.
  • 38% of design pros spend over $500 per year on professional development to maintain their career.
  • 39% of design pros say they currently attend in-person seminars and workshops, and 39% say this is one of the most valuable ways to enhance their skills.
  • 37% of design pros say they currently attend online seminars, workshops and webinars, and 42% say this is one of the most valuable ways to enhance their skills
  • Most design pros (63%) do not belong to an industry association.
  • 14% of design pros say they belong to National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA), 8% say American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) and 7% say National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI).

For Inspiration, Design Pros Favor Traditional Media

The survey reveals that when pursuing inspiration, design pros turn to print magazines more than online resources to keep track of current design trends and product developments. However, websites still top the list as the most common outlet for tracking trends and developments.

  • 62% of design pros say they use websites to keep track of current design trends and product developments.
  • 47% of respondents selected print magazines, followed by online magazines (39%) and social media (37%).

Survey Methodology

Hausera conducted “Kitchen & Bath Design Professional Insights Survey” via SurveyMonkey between Sept. 16-Oct. 1, 2019. Feedback was obtained from 138 kitchen & bath design professionals.

To download an ebook with the survey’s findings, go to https://www.hausera.com/media/2463/hausera-b2b-professional-insights-survey-ebook-final.pdf.

About Hausera

Hausera offers a new kind of online kitchen & bath shopping experience designed to empower homeowners and design pros with a curated shopping experience. Created specifically for the home remodeling market, Hausera is founded on the twin concepts of pride and joy – the pride one feels by acting on inspiration and executing a remodeling vision, and the joy of achieving that vision on budget and taking pleasure in the result for years. With deep kitchen & bath product expertise, Hausera provides a tailored and curated shopping experience that helps homeowners and design pros find the perfect products for bringing their design inspirations to life. For more information, visit https://www.hausera.com/.

Contacts

Michael Tebo

Gabriel Marketing Group (for Hausera)

Phone: 571-835-8775

Email: [email protected]