Go to a business conference and you’re bound to hear a motivational speaker slinging cliches and other phrases around that you’ve heard 1000 times. More likely than not, they’re going to say something along the lines of how you should always be looking to improve or you should never settle.
You should apply that quote from TV’s Bear Grylls where he encourages people to “improvise, adapt, overcome.”
Even though those quotes may sound cheesy, there is some truth to them. You should always be looking for ways to improve or change your business for something positive.
When you’re looking to start a construction business, there are some important questions that you should be asking yourself when you’re at the beginning stages.
Do you have a sound business plan?
A business plan is necessary for just about any business but is the first step in becoming a successful construction firm.
Your business plan is going to help you determine the number of things, such as your business entity, how to apply for loans, and what your goals are. It will also layout which area of construction you want to specialize in and how you expect to reach those milestones.
This plan should be what you refer to on a regular basis in order to make sure your mission and values are.
It will also help you get your financial ducks in a row, helping you set up a realistic budget, draw out profits, and help you plan at least three years into the future.
You might also be able to answer a lot of those smaller questions, such as the option to rent vehicles instead of purchasing them or which construction software you should choose.
Should you hire contractors or employees?
This is one of the first questions that every construction business owner should be asking themselves. There are a number of pros and cons to both sides of the argument and whichever you choose largely depends on you.
When it comes to employees, you’re going to have more control over their work, their training, and making sure that the person only works for you. Payment is more regulated and, of course, it helps to be able to have that familiarity as well when you see the same people at work every day.
Employees, however, do come with a ton of regulations from both federal and state governments. Not following those regulations leaves the door open for liability issues.
Contractors, on the other hand, are the exact opposite. They will likely come in more experienced but will have the option to work for others and will largely do the work in the manner that they see fit.
If you have more short-term projects or special projects, then going with a contractor is usually the right call. Payment can be less regulated but there are fewer responsibilities when it comes to paying contractors.
How will you combat the worker’s shortage?
More and more construction businesses and firms are having issues finding skilled workers. Even in booming markets such as Seattle, there do not appear to be enough skilled workers that can complete the job.
This means that projects are taking longer and longer, possibly hindering your ability to take on multiple projects or quickly finish up others. It’s a problem that the entire construction industry is facing and requires some strategic thinking.
Are you bringing in enough technology?
There is no sector in the world that is free from the grasp of technology and construction is no different.
Every year seems to present more and more tech solutions that are being integrated quickly into the construction world.
For example, more people are turning towards drones to scout out certain areas. They are also being used to supervise projects or even check out land that was previously inaccessible. These are much cheaper and viable options than getting in a helicopter for that bird’s eye view.
Also, more firms are requiring their workers to wear vital-measuring gear in order to make sure that no one is overworking themselves. It’s also great for making sure that everyone is adhering to safety guidelines and following protocol.