Once you have created a business model that justifies your investment to expand or build a new building, hiring the right design and construction team members is key to your project’s success. Hiring a construction company is the biggest and most important financial decision you will make on your project.
The right partner will help advise the entire project team on the most efficient construction approach, plan the construction budget and schedule, and run a smooth construction project that will take headaches away from you and your project team. Making a poor choice of construction partner for the wrong reasons (such as a low upfront fee) can lead to issues that all have the same result—added cost to the project—whether it’s budget, schedule, constructability, quality, or safety related.
So what do you need to know to choose the right construction partner?
Experience is Number One
When considering which construction company to choose to build your project, experience is number one. What is the prospective firm’s experience in building your specific type of facility? For example, the company may have been in business for decades, but if it hasn’t built many projects like yours, that firm likely doesn’t know the ins and outs of your project. If you’re seeking a firm that can build a multi-family development, look to see previous multi-family work the company has recently built. If in the interview stage your potential contractor says “This is how we built the last six projects,” you’ll recognize that firm as having the depth of experience needed for your job.
Ask about Working relationships with subcontractors
Along the line of depth of experience, ask your prospective contractor about its relationships with the subcontractors it employs. Don’t hesitate to ask about the consistency with which they can attract general subs and specialty subs to work on projects. Ask about their working relationship with various local and regional building trades. Questions like these will reveal how the construction company is regarded by others in the building industry. The quality and strength of these relationships often determines the price, quality of work, and the schedule available.
Ask for Project/Client references
Construction companies who value their reputation will treat each project as a long-term relationship. For them, their reputation on a job done well is the key to getting repeat work and referrals that will sustain their business over time—just as you strive to do in your business.
Check their references. Get an understanding into areas where they were highly successful (such as hitting the budget or schedule, frequent and honest communication, or running a clean and safe jobsite), as well as where they could improve. Trust what the market tells you about each candidate company. The successful companies that are doing it “the right way” will usually rise to the top.
Investigate their Financial strength
How financially stable your prospective contractor is is often an indicator of how smoothly your project will run from start to finish. A construction company that has the financial wherewithal and the healthy cash flow to meet shorter payment cycles for subcontractors and suppliers will expedite your project and keep it on track.
Don't Base your Decision on Price Alone
Rarely is the lowest price for pre-construction and construction services the right answer. Price shouldn’t be the only or even the most important reason you choose a construction company—the value that they can add to the completion of your project is.
When looking for a construction partner, provide as much detail on your project as possible up front. Then listen to how they will approach your project and respond to project challenges. The key is to find a builder that has the experience and technical expertise to offer you a fair price for their services that will add value and ensure a successful, enjoyable project for the entire team.
Look for demonstrable integrity.
Construction projects are complex, demanding and highly technical. They involve dozens if not hundreds of individuals and their respective employers. Do your due diligence so that you can rest easy knowing your construction company has your back and exhibits integrity in all areas and through all decision-making. You’ve got the right to know and expect that they are working in your best interest at all times.
If you’re looking for an experienced, trusted construction partner, contact Holland Construction Services. Our experienced team has the skills, knowledge, and resources to help your project succeed.