11 Problems Contractors Have to Face

 

Contractors face a number of different problems, some of which have been present for many years, and others have joined only in the past decade. No matter what the pain-points are, contractors need to learn how to identify and solve them in order to have a successful business. They are not only responsible for their employees, but for their family and clients as well,


Even though there are many more issues, in this article, we will go through the eleven most challenging ones for tradesmen.

1. Worker shortage

In the last couple of years, one of the main problems contractors face is finding proper and talented workers. In order to preserve the business, contractors need to become more creative in their training, technologies and recruiting strategies so they can attract the right people.

 

“The age gap between the people needed and the ones working is quite big as well. The youth does not feel tempted to start working in this field and their desires are more headed to a creative, financial, linguistic or programming future. It is hard to find good pest exterminators,” says PantherPestControl.co.uk, “The parents are also a part of this change as they tend to push their kids to a more traditional higher education, and prefer having their kids behind a desk, where it’s supposedly safer. Where in our experience, the market of pest control is only growing in the UK”.

 

One way to deal with this issue is for contractors to engage in a strong marketing campaign towards younger generations. Companies are starting to see the benefit of internships, which are helpful for both parties in more than one way. Companies are able to test the talents of the employee before hiring them full time while popularising the business. The students, on their side, will be able to work in a proper environment, gathering experience while combining it with their studies while also balance as a part time job for cleaning, moving, pet walking and even voice actor gigs.

 

Another good strategy for companies is a partnership with high schools and vocational schools. By doing so, contractors will have the chance to catch the attention of potential future employees while they are still young and searching for their path in life.

2. Increased competition

Unlike the working force, throughout the years, competition is only growing. This is more of an issue for the small-scale contractors and not so much for already accomplished and proved companies.

 

Most of the work goes to the companies people already trust and have tried before, so that’s why is harder for those smaller to win a bid and projects in general.

3. Rising Cost of Raw Materials

There is always a huge risk of cost change during a fixed price project. Many times the price of land and raw materials can change so quickly, that the small construction companies don’t have enough time to react and suffer great losses.

4. Safety

Every contractor and business owner understands the importance of safety regulations. Keeping the workers secure and unharmed should be a top priority for everyone. That’s why regular training should be performed and the safety protocols updated when needed. Still, this is a bit difficult to achieve with the constant flow of new inexperienced workers.

 

“So in order to keep everyone safe, frequent trainings and strong vigilance by management and supervisors are crucial” shares Jordan Vellutini from Westline Electrical Services.

4. Slow Invoicing and Payments

A common problem that small construction businesses face is underestimating the importance of having a reliable invoicing system. Without one, the cash flow cannot be regulated properly and it’s a lot harder to keep track of the projects and their different phases.

 

It’s easier and smarter to divide the various payments that go with the different parts of a certain property, than having a bunch of resources tied up in a single job advice Variety Cleaners.

5. Time constraints

With the constant flood of demand, many contractors face issues with keeping up with their schedule. The ones motivated to get better, have started integrating a project management technology which allows them to do real-time updates and data entry. With a simplified communication and daily updates, those contractors manage to do a lot with less.

6. Government regulation

Often contractors find it difficult to keep themselves up-to-date with the constantly changing government regulations connected to their business. Still, no matter how annoying it might be, they have to regularly check posts and publications about the construction industries and reassure that nothing will affect them.

 

It’s best to have a specific person who will keep up with the regulations and will have the time to check how the business is affected financially and economically, if possible, one who is usually keeping track of the company’s documents.

8. Trouble getting paid

This issue affects mostly subcontractors. A paycheck of a subcontractor depends on how good they are at keeping records. The documents presented must always be detailed and completely accurate in order to collect the money on time. Proper file organisation and security are a must here if the subcontractor wants to receive what he deserves.

9. Lack of communication

Having a good level of communication between the different layers of management and workers should be a natural target for every contractor.

 

Naturally, the smaller the company, the easier it is to achieve, but one must not put compromise when the business grows larger. Everyone wants to streamline operations, improve their accuracy and overall having a good flow of work in every field and level of their company.

 

Luckily we are living in the era of communications so mobile and cloud based softwares are easy to use and implement in the work of your staff. Time has proven that nothing compares to real-time communication when completing a project with a deadline or with certain milestones. So check what are the best options for your business, put them to action and enjoy the efficiency of your workers.

10. Managing documents & files

There is a very small number of people who genuinely like sorting out documents and files. Especially if the transition from paper records to a mobile and cloud-based system has not yet occurred.

 

The latter makes access to notes, documents, records and photos a lot easier and also space saving. There are no restrictions on where the files are opened from. Could be done from the office or from home. You can decide which ones should be accessible to all the employees, which ones are only for the coordinators and so on.

 

Security is easy to control, more reliable just physically guarding a bunch of documents. Still, the person managing all of the files and the cloud systems should be someone who is specially trained for such tasks and someone who can be trusted completely. Having the wrong people taking care of your documentation is very dangerous and should be avoided at all costs.

11. Integrating technology

Now that we have already mentioned a couple of fairly new technologies that could be implemented in the construction business, is important to also add that they should be integrated slowly, carefully and by people who are specialist in the technological fields. Innovations are easily accepted by the younger generations, but the process for the veteran employees might be a bit longer.

 

It’s important to make everyone understand that these technologies will not change the operations of the company, but only improve the quality and execution of already existing practices.

The future is bright for the learner


Just like in every other business, problems and issues will never seize to exist, so to survive, one must learn each day and never stop improving. As the technology and the rest of the world move forward, so should tradesmen companies. Business will never disappear and the demand for competent people as well. The types of projects might change and for a person who has been working only 5 years ago, they might seem absurd and impossible, but for the contractor of today, everything is in the realm of possibilities.