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Building the right team for success!

Benchmark Right Team for Success
March 17, 2024 at 3:00 p.m.

By Curtis Liscum, Benchmark. 

Learn how to find that perfect match between a contractor and a project. 

In my experience as a senior consultant with Benchmark, one of the hardest and most important parts of managing a larger project is finding the right collaborators – specifically the right roofing contractor. While areas such as roof design are unquestionably important, my 40 years of experience in the industry have revealed that the execution of the project is even more crucial. In this article, I’ll break down how to find the right contractor for your project by using a reliable network and conducting a little preliminary research. 

Questions to ask 

1 - Does the contractor have a permanent place of business? Roofing is a labor, material and equipment-intensive business and the contractor should have a “brick and mortar” location for organizing and staging projects. The location of the office is less important as many “national” contractors can do great work with traveling crews. 

 2 - Does the contractor have any applicable state and local registrations or business licenses? Regardless of their home office location, they must be licensed to work in the project location. In addition to having current registrations or licenses, they must also have a current Federal Tax ID Number.  

3 - Does the contractor have liability insurance coverage and workers’ compensation coverage for all employees? Insist on seeing copies of the insurance certificates of coverage. Coverage limits will vary depending on the project and your company’s requirements. It is important to verify that the coverages are in effect throughout the duration of the project. 

4 - Ask for references. Look for a contractor with a proven history on projects like the one being considered and on facilities like yours. If you are installing a single-ply roof on a hospital you want contractors with just that type of experience. Ask them to provide a list of completed projects and references and then call the references to verify. 

Things to review 

1 - Review the contractor safety program and safety record. Project safety cannot be overstressed. Collaborate with a contractor that places as much importance on safety as you do. 

2 - Review and investigate the contractor’s training program. How do they keep their employees up to date on current roofing practices? Are they trained by the roofing material manufacturer in the materials and methods being proposed for the project? 

3 - Check to see if the contractor is vested in the roofing industry. Are they members of any local, state, regional or national roofing industry association?    

 4 - Verify their staffing. Will the mechanics working on your project be employees of the contractor or will they be subcontractors? Subcontracting is becoming a national trend in our industry, please see the article “Subcontracting in Roofing Projects" for more information about this increasingly common practice. It is important for you to know who is responsible for project supervision, who is supplying insurance and worker’s compensation coverage and the safety record of the individuals on the roof.    

Places to source names for a bidder list  

1 - Your designer of record (architect, engineer or consultant) is a great place to start when looking for potential bidders. They have in-depth knowledge of the project, your facility and the local or national contractor base. In many instances, contractor pre-qualification may be a part of their services. 

2 - Another source for mining potential contractors is your peers or folks engaged in similar jobs managing roofing projects. You may know these folks and meet with them periodically at industry professional organizations. Ask for feedback on projects completed by potential contractors. 

3 - Roofing material manufacturers' representatives will be happy to provide you with authorized contractors that can install their products. Most manufacturers have a contractor search engine on their website. Remember though, their list of potential bidders will be based on the contractor support of the manufacturer and may not consider many of the items listed above. 

 4 - Local, state, regional or national roofing industry associations are another source for finding contractors. Many of the organization's websites have member search engines. Again, these members’ listings may not consider many of the above-listed items. 

 5 - Social media is another tool available when looking for a roofing contractor. Posting on social media is an informal way of asking for referrals. Two of the most common social media platforms for contractor recommendations are Facebook and LinkedIn. 

6 - Finally, Google search can be used to find roofing contractors. While Google search results are broader than results from an association or manufacturer directory, they can still help locate roofing contractors. Including roofing material keywords and a property’s location in the search parameters will improve the results. For example, searching “Commercial PVC Roofer Los Angeles” will produce more relevant results than searching “Commercial Roofer.” 

Original article source: Benchmark

Learn more about Benchmark in their Coffee Shop Directory or visit www.benchmark-inc.com.

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