Effective and efficient subcontractors will enable you to do more work and increase profits
In recent surveys we keep hearing the same lament, “I can’t find qualified workers.” The other complaint I often hear is “it is so difficult to train my crew and then they forget how to do what I taught them.” Often those things you need them to do aren’t done enough for your employees to get good at them. This leads to inefficiencies on the job, frustration and lost profits. In this article we will examine some of the options to handle some of these challenges.
Where do subcontractors fit in? And how can they help? First, let’s start with a broader, possibly more creative definition of subcontracting. For the purposes of this discussion we will define a subcontractor as anyone or any company that can fulfill any unmet need, job or task to enable you to produce more work. This could and should include the specialty trades, supplemental workers to add to your crews, as well as other contractors who are willing to do a job for a contractor instead of working directly with the client. In addition to considering subcontractors for the production area of your business, you might consider subcontracting out some of those arduous paperwork tasks.
By examining all areas of your business you will probably find places where using a subcontractor will help. Remember that even though it may occasionally seem to be more economical to “do it yourself” it can actually cost you more in lost production. Obvious examples include the use of electricians and plumbers. Other instances of this include the use of rip-out and debris removal professionals or the use of installation specialists. While these subs are handling certain portions of your work, your own crew can be doing other production. This team approach then makes it possible to complete more work in the allotted time, so that you can actually take on more jobs.
Although it may seem expensive to hire a subcontractor you will find that by using a specialist it will be more economical in the long run. A specialist in an area will usually be able to do the work more effectively and efficiently than you or your crew would be able to do. Remember a specialist is just that, a specialist; they do what they do all the time. So consider using these specialists to lighten your workload.
For those of you who are frustrated with scheduling challenges or “too much work,” carefully examine what you or your production crew is doing that can possibly be turned over. Look at everything you or your existing employees do and ask yourself if someone else can do it. For those of you who are specialists in an area or trade, make yourself and your availability known to other contractors.