Your construction business was likely affected by the Coronavirus stay-at-home order, in one way or another. Because some projects in the industry were deemed “essential,” many of us were close to full operation – while others of us were running on a skeleton crew, or maybe even shut down for a small period of time. As we are starting to do work again and adapting to our new working world, here are some of the things that we advise your business to focus on in order to be safe and profitable:
Increase Safety Precautions
Add new protocols to adhere to the 6-ft social distancing separation when possible, as well as new sanitary precautions in order to limit any future growth of Corona. <insert link to other Madden article about this> Make it easy for your craftsmen to wash their hands, consider requiring masks, and try shift-stacking. We urge you to continue to execute responsible safety supervision, inspections, and tracking when performing dangerous work – so there may be times that 6-ft separation isn’t an option in order to keep the jobsite safe. Use your judgement wisely!
Do More Remotely
Companies around the world in all industries adapted to the quarantine with various forms of remote working during the Coronavirus outbreak. Although that’s more difficult in construction, there are some ways to do this. Project management meetings, for example, can be done by zoom or another video conference platform. Drones <insert link to article about drones> can be used to perform jobsite inspections. Plan in advance and use warehouse space for some work or assembly when possible.
Modular and prefabrication construction can also be an effective strategy, as it can be done offsite in a controlled environment, making it easier to keep to new working health standards. We suggest you get familiar with the modularization and prefabrication process, <insert link to Madden article about this> and start researching how it can be used for your future projects. It will likely require you to use new suppliers as well, so do your homework to see which ones are available!
Review Your Contracts
As things keep changing, you’ll want to be very clear on how your agreements specified how you and your clients would address and deal with any changes. While your contracts may provide language for relief caused by major events or “acts of god,” the key here is proper notice. Stay in communication with your clients and your suppliers to make sure you can fulfil the delivery of work, and whether you can keep to your projected timelines. When you can’t deliver, do your diligence to meet the contractual notice requirements as outlined.
Plan Ahead and Hire Professionals
Your private and even government clients may be facing permanent layoffs and budget cutbacks too – which means projects might be stalled or discontinued, and your construction company could face even further financial strain or bankruptcy. Look at your possible outcomes and strategize with a contingency plan. You may need to work with attorneys and accountants for lawsuits, collections or even consult with bankruptcy professionals.
One thing is certain: we are just now beginning to understand all of the effects from the COVID-19 pandemic. New challenges and opportunities are coming up every day, so keep your eye out on how you can adapt and evolve with models and systems. If you’re looking for craftsmen who can help you as your business has evolved during this crisis, give Madden Industrial Craftsmen a call! We’re here to help you find the best talent in the trade to match your next job opening.