Today’s article covers five useful tips on making commercial contractors work for your business. Whether you work with technicians in construction, retail, or other industry that relies on skilled and educated labor, you’re likely to find that many other professionals within that industry are not working as employees but rather as contractors. While the labor they can provide for you may be much the same, there are specific differences to working with contractors that may require you to be more particular in how you work with them, as well as more likely to take advantage of some of the perks that working with someone outside of the company can offer.
5 Tips on Making Commercial Contractors Work For Your Business
1. Understand It’s Not an Employer/Employee Relationship
The first thing that you need to be aware of is the differences in your relationship between working with an employee and working with a contractor. Contractors are not obligated to follow the codes of conduct as laid out by your business, nor can you redirect their labor outside of what they are specifically paid to do.
However, businesses also take on much less of the professional cost of contractors, not having to pay for their own insurance and rarely having to pay for any training they may require.
2. Use Contracts To Lay Down Expectations
As the name implies, one of the central elements of working well with contractors is the contract. The contract can lay down the expectations of both parties, ensuring that both agree to and adhere to certain standards. From the contractor’s side, this includes payment, expected work, and the agreement terms.
As the one who is paying, you should ensure that your contract includes any and all work orders that you want completed, as well as any standards to which you expect the contractor to work. Tools like BuildOps field service management software can help businesses that work with a large number of contractors, ensuring that they can keep track of different contracts. If there’s a dispute about the work, both parties can turn to the contract to see who is in breach.
3. Actively Work With Them
It’s not enough to simply have a member of your team pointing contractors in the right direction. If you want to get the best work from them, you also need to get hands-on with handling them. Someone with competence, who is fit to represent you and the company, should be there to greet the contractor, to quickly go over the details of the contract and work order that they’re taking on, and to make sure that they have what they need while performing any necessary inductions (such as informing them of work site safety measures.) You should make sure there is a chain of contact for your contractors to be able to reach you or someone suitable when they need help, too.
4. Know The Metrics Required For Tracking Your Contractors
Many business owners who rely on contractors can get into a position of expecting them to complete work that they do not fully understand. If you don’t have a clear understanding of what you’re asking for, specifically, then it’s also a lot harder to verify if the work has been done to the standard that you’re expecting. To that end, make sure that you have a clear understanding of the scope of the work that you pass off to any contractors, and consider using KPI measuring tools like Simple KPI to be able to get a better idea of whether or not the work is being completed to your expectations and standards.
5. Keep Track of Invoicing
One of the most common complaints when working with contractors, or as a contractor, is the lack of organized payment. If you want to keep working with contractors and avoid any legal disputes, then having a system that can see them paid reliably and on time is crucial. Invoice management tools can ensure that you’re always aware of what is owed by the business, the status of any work orders it applies to, and expected payment dates. Of course, withholding payment in the case of incomplete work is not uncommon, but you had better ensure you’re not putting yourself in breach of any contracts.
Outsourcing your business’s labor to contractors can require a little more management, but it can ensure that you’re able to access a vast network of talent that would take much longer to hire typically. We hope these five tips on making commercial contractors work for your business have been insightful and that you will implement some or all of them to see if it works for you.