Quadruple A developer DMCI Homes, a subsidiary of DMCI Holdings Inc. (PSE: DMC), is instituting a number of safety and productivity measures to adapt to the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Since May, the company has been expanding the barracks capacity in its construction sites to limit the exposure of its workers and lessen their dependence on public transportation.
Its barracks can now house 4,202 workers compared to 3,108 prior to the imposition of the enhanced community quarantine in mid-March. Over 2,900 workers are currently staying at the on-site barracks provided by DMCI Homes.
The company has also been providing its skilled workers with free Vitamin C supplements to help improve their overall health.
“We understand the mobility limitations and health risks faced by our workers. By increasing our barracks capacity, we hope to attract more workers and contain the spread of the coronavirus,” said DMCI Homes president and CEO Alfredo R. Austria.
The company has also launched a “Bike Loan” program wherein bicycles are purchased by DMCI Homes for the personal transportation requirements of its qualified skilled workers.
Program beneficiaries do not need to shell out any cash as the bike loans are repaid interest-free via salary deductions for six to seven months. Some 322 workers have availed of the bike loan assistance, with the company targeting to have 4,981 of its skilled workers as its beneficiaries.
To increase productivity and address delays in the supply of ready-mixed concrete, DMCI Homes commissioned a 180 cubic meter per hour (m3/ hr) concrete batching plant strategically located in Pasig City which will allow the company to expedite concreting works relative to its project requirements and construction schedule.
DMCI Homes is also at the tail end of developing modular concrete building components for its in-house requirements. Modularization will allow the company to rationalize manpower deployment without compromising project turnover schedules. It is likewise investing in additional material handling equipment to limit the use of manual labor in its jobsites.
“From a customer experience perspective, we are going full speed with our digital transformation. We are shifting our sales and marketing efforts online using virtual tours, online property presentations and online reservation and payment,” explained Austria.
DMCI Homes has also digitized and ramped up its customer service via its online channels and newly-developed mobile app for property management and community services.
“This pandemic has affected the real estate sector in many different ways. The best way forward is really adaptation. We need to learn to live with this virus,” he added.