Running a general contracting business can be tough. You’re responsible for overseeing construction projects, managing multiple subcontractors and suppliers, and keeping everything on schedule and within budget. This all means that the stakes can be high.
Without your input, a construction project can quickly fall apart – meaning thousands (or even millions) in wasted dollars, angry clients and destroyed land. To make sure your general contracting business performs strongly, it is crucial for you to make sure a few key areas are taken care of.
For example, you will need to consider delegating clear roles, streamlining your bidding process and hiring the right sub-contractors.
It’s a lot to handle, but don’t worry. Here are some useful tips to help make your general contracting business more efficient and streamlined:
There are tons of tools out there that can help you stay organized and on track. These can help you create schedules, assign tasks, and track project progress. They can also help you communicate with your team and keep track of project documents.
To find the best general contractor software for your business, start by narrowing down what you need it for. Once you have identified tasks that need completing more efficiently – such as designing the layout of the site – you will find it easier to pinpoint the right solution.
Clearly define roles and responsibilities
One of the most common reasons construction companies fall apart and suffer a chronic drop in productivity is that no one understands their role. On such a busy site, it can be easy for roles to blend, team communication to break down, and people to juggle multiple jobs simultaneously. To solve this, make sure everyone knows who’s responsible for what. This will prevent confusion and mistakes and help things run more smoothly.
If your general contracting business is small, it is tempting to handle many key jobs yourself, but this is potentially a grave mistake. You will end up burning out and disenfranchising your workforce. Instead, hand out roles and set each team member specific goals to hit.
Streamline your bidding process
Bidding on projects can be a major time drain, but it’s a necessary part of your business. Unfortunately, it typically becomes impossible to balance providing a personalized bid and not investing too much time on a contract you might not land.
To help with this, use standardized templates for your bids and proposals to make things more efficient. This will save you time and ensure that you give clients consistent information.
Automate your invoicing and payments
Invoicing and collecting payments can be painful, but some tools can help automate these processes.
Invoicing software or payment platforms can streamline sending invoices and collecting payments, freeing up more time for other things.
Use technology to improve communication
Good communication is key to the success of any project, and technology can help make it easier. Use tools like video conferencing, messaging apps, or project management software to keep everyone on the same page and reduce the need for in-person meetings.
Use prefabricated materials
Prefabricated materials like prefabricated walls or trusses can save you time and money. They’re manufactured off-site and delivered ready for installation, which reduces on-site fabrication and labor costs.
Building sites can be chaotic, noisy and messy environments, but this is no excuse for a sloppy organization. If your team is leaving equipment in the wrong place, forgetting to follow standard operating procedures or not turning up on time, your productivity can be decimated.
The solution is to keep your job sites and office organized to work more efficiently. This includes keeping tools and equipment in designated areas, having a system for storing and organizing project documents, and keeping the job site clean and clutter-free.
Hire the right subcontractors
Subcontractors can help you take on more projects and grow your business. Still, it’s essential to choose the right ones. Look for reliable subcontractors with a good reputation and the skills and experience your projects require.
Without the right subcontractors, you could end up with a poorly executed project, bad organizational abilities and even theft or other criminal behavior on your hands – so choose wisely.
Be proactive about problem-solving
Flexibility and pragmatism are the most fundamental qualities any general contracting business needs to embody.
There will always be challenges and setbacks on your projects but addressing and resolving them is critical anticipating potential problems and having contingency plans in place, you can minimize delays and keep your projects on track.