Leading a successful construction company is, in many ways, similar to working a puzzle. You start off with the edges, progress to the framework, and then the various pieces that complete your work are plugged in. However, it can be quite challenging sometimes to figure out where a particular piece goes. Sometimes, you can’t find that final piece, which is even worse. You can clearly see the space that needs to be filled out, but you aren’t sure about how to proceed.
The aspects of running a construction business are wide-ranging and multifarious. With the industry being so competitive, there’s a multitude of things you have to consider, and remain constantly on top of, including enhancing productivity and efficiency, improving safety, keeping up-to-date with the ever-changing industry standards and regulations, being aware of the latest technological advancements, and improving workplace safety.
The following are some tips that will help your construction business grow and succeed.
You may have heard the old adage, “Measure twice, cut once”. Well, it perfectly represents the approach you should take when planning a construction project. Since most of the errors occur during the planning stage of a project, it’s imperative to take the time and do your homework before giving the green light for operations to commence. The planning stage can include, but isn’t limited to, allocating finances, creating a work schedule, setting project deadlines, prioritizing tasks, and communicating requirements and expectations to your team. By creating a clear roadmap for projects, you break it down into small, easily manageable steps as well as provide benchmarks for the team.
Seamless communication is key to the success of a construction project. You’re probably thinking that this is a no-brainer. However, you’ll be surprised at how many projects go bad because of miscommunications or lack of dialogue between the back office and the field. Communication is vital from the very start of the project. Prior to even stepping on the job site, you should set timelines, expectations and protocols when problems arise. When your crew and project managers aren’t properly aligned on the project’s objectives, problems and delays are inevitable.
It’s vital for stakeholders to communicate with each other throughout the entirety of the project. Without an effective communication pipeline in place, projects are bound to hit bottlenecks and fall behind schedule.
Cover Your Bases
Insurance is one of the basic needs of every modern business – particularly if the business involves working with electric tools and heavy machinery on a daily basis. Make sure you have adequate coverage when it comes to potential property damage, injuries and lawsuits. These days, the process of finding the right insurance policy is quite an easy one, especially when you can find specialized insurance policies that are tailored for your specific industry.
Don’t Cut Corners
It might be tempting to save money by going with less expensive equipment and materials. However, keep in mind that in the construction industry, where there’s a high risk of accidents and lawsuits, saving now often means spending later. For instance, investing in stainless steel screws might be a smart decision when the project is being constructed in a location that’s vulnerable to wet weather. While your client may not have the adequate construction knowledge to know the difference, however, they’ll definitely notice if things start to break down or start rusting.
Invest in the Right Personnel and the Right Equipment
It is common knowledge that there’s a multitude of health and safety hazards associated with construction site work. And the best way to mitigate risks is to have the right personnel and equipment at hand. Investing in the right personnel and equipment not only ensures the safety of your crew, but it also helps your business to remain in compliance with industry laws and regulations.
Let’s take for instance, the rigging and lifting operations that are typically a part of every construction project. OSHA has defined the characteristics that separate a regular rigging or lifting operation from a high-risk rigging or lifting operation, which is also referred to as a ‘critical lift’.
Your company may also have internal parameters and policies that dictate what type of operations are classified as critical lifts. For example, some construction companies consider the lifting of high-value loads or personnel as critical lifts.
Due to the high-risk nature of critical lifts, OSHA requires every construction company to have a detailed lift plan to reduce the chances of crane failure or accidents.
Also, when it comes to performing critical lifts, you don’t want your personnel to be wearing multiple hats. The ideal scenario is to have one individual in charge of each specific aspect of the job. In fact, this is mandated by OSHA. For critical lifts, you need to have:
A certified lift director
A certified rigger
A certified crane operator
A certified crane spotter
A site supervisor
Moreover, having the right equipment can significantly improve workflow efficiency and minimize the risk of accidents and mishaps. In the case of lifting and rigging operations, advanced crane safety instruments, such as a wind speed indicator, LMI system, and crane camera system can all help in ensuring that operations are carried out as safely and efficiently as possible.
There are two parts to this one. The first one is that, no matter what, you must remain available to your clients at all times. Construction can be quite a confusing process for people who aren’t familiar with it, so your client may need your help to remain clued in on how things are going. The more time you allocate to hearing them out and alleviating their concerns, the more comfortable they’ll feel recommending you to a friend or hiring you again in the future.
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