The award-winning industry bible, EXTERNAL WORKS: to print or not to print? That was the question

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Over 25 years of influence and expertise as the market leader and still going strong!

We recently undertook a survey to find out how many of you still use the EXTERNAL WORKS directory, either in its printed form (affectionately known as the industry bible) or via our website www.ESI.info.

The survey, which was sent to a wide range of professionals involved in external works and landscape projects, demonstrates that trusted, credible printed resources are still very much in demand when it comes to making decisions about who and what to work with.

Nearly 80% of you, who took part in the survey, confirmed that you still use printed copies of the EXTERNAL WORKS directory and 75% wanted to receive a new up-to-date directory.

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Click to Enlarge

Most respondents referred to EXTERNAL WORKS as their first port of call when looking for new products or suppliers to work with. The main factors influencing this choice related to convenience, timesaving and the credibility of the information published. Many indicated that they preferred the book as everything was in one place, rather than having to use general search engines to look for several companies at a time.

A significant segment also referred to EXTERNAL WORKS as an essential visual aid and reference when discussing designs or specifications in meetings with the design team or with clients.

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Online routes to EXTERNAL WORKS

Approximately 21% of you preferred to access EXTERNAL WORKS information online.

Factors for using the website suggested it was more comprehensive in coverage, great for generating ideas,  with additional tools making it quicker to contact relevant manufacturers or suppliers.  Some of you also indicated that you often started using the book and then went online to find more granular information in order to shortlist and compare products, or to contact multiple suppliers.

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Unsurprisingly, the pressure on space in offices meant fewer respondents had access to printed libraries, and many companies indicated that company policy meant a move to paperless working. Other factors for choosing online resources included those of you who work in shared or mobile workspaces.

What was surprising was that less than 1% of respondents mentioned visiting manufacturers’ websites directly when looking for sourcing products and suppliers online, suggesting the important role directories and websites like EXTERNAL WORKS play in supporting key decisions when choosing products and materials to work with.

Looking ahead

In the face of such positive feedback, we have decided to print a 25th anniversary edition of the EXTERNAL WORKS directory, to be released in May 2013.

This decision goes hand in hand with an exciting development programme planned throughout 2013 to make EXTERNAL WORKS information available in different formats including print, online and mobile, to suit your evolving requirements and working practices. We’re also working on new content that will allow consultants and contractors to showcase projects, as well as products and services.

Finally, a big thank you to all those who took part in our survey

We’d like to thank all respondents who took the time to complete this short survey. Your feedback was invaluable in helping us reach this decision to print a final edition.

A special mention should also go to Howard Bowcott, the artist and landscape sculptor, who won our prize draw for a new Apple iPAD.

Request your copy of the new EXTERNAL WORKS 2013 edition

If you would like to request a copy of this forthcoming directory, please contact us on the details below.

Email:    bookreg@esi.info
Tel:        01786 407000

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