Why General Contractors Are Essential to a Successful Project

Whether renovating your kitchen, adding a deck, or just painting the house, you need more than just a counter guy, electrician, and painter. It would be best to have a general contractor (GC). Contact General Contractors Lexington KY now!

Finding a licensed, experienced GC with a long record of success and glowing references is essential. But what makes a great one?

Project management in construction requires the coordination of multiple stakeholders to bring a building project to fruition. Whether it’s the owner, architect, engineers, contractors who design and build the building, or the project manager hired to oversee the construction process, every person has different roles in the overall success of a building project.

The project manager oversees the construction work and ensures it is carried out as the contract outlines. This includes managing the subcontractors, scheduling work, estimating and negotiating materials and supplies, coordinating with the project’s architect and engineer, and maintaining accurate project records.

A good project manager is a valuable asset for any construction company. They have the experience and expertise to manage projects from start to finish and will work tirelessly to ensure the job is completed on time and within budget. Project managers can also solve problems on the fly and always think about ways to make the project run more efficiently and effectively.

Project managers are also responsible for obtaining the necessary building permits, providing premise security, arranging temporary utilities on site, and managing generated waste. In addition, the project manager is responsible for communicating with the client and updating them on progress regularly. The project manager must relay all relevant information accurately between the client and any other parties involved in the construction process.

The final part of the project management role is to ensure all materials arrive on time at the construction site. This includes verifying the quality of the materials and ensuring they are delivered in the correct quantity to complete construction on schedule. Project management in construction is a complex role that requires a great deal of skill and knowledge. The good news is that the right general contractor will have the skills and resources to handle all aspects of a construction project.

For homeowners, hiring a general contractor is an excellent way to have all the work done on their home remodel with as little hands-on involvement as possible. However, the convenience of having someone take care of everything comes with a price. General contractors typically charge a percentage of the total construction cost, which can add up quickly. For those who want to save money, a project manager can provide the same services for less.

It’s no secret that a contract can be the most contentious aspect of a construction project. Ideally, all parties would reach a fair and equitable agreement before work begins. Unfortunately, this is not always possible and, if not carefully managed, can lead to significant conflicts down the road that impact schedules and costs. A general contractor with contract negotiation experience can make all the difference.

Understanding the project scope, timelines, and key stakeholders is essential to a successful negotiation. Additionally, knowing the laws governing contract language in your state can be a big help. According to Scott Grier, an 11-year attorney with Rouse, Frets, White, and Goss, many contracts contain language that doesn’t jive with specific state requirements. Understanding what’s legal in your area allows you to spot non-compliant clauses early and quickly develop acceptable resolutions.

Contract negotiations require a thorough analysis of the project’s budget, jurisdiction by-laws, and project scope to determine the most beneficial terms for each party. Then, collecting and reviewing documentation to support the negotiating position is a matter. This can include previous contracts, detailed cost estimates, and the tender submissions of other bidders.

Another common negotiation point is how risk will be shared on the project. Most owners prefer to shift the risk to the general contractor, whereas contractors want to push as much risk onto subcontractors as possible. Identifying the preferred sharing of risk and addressing it in the initial contract negotiations will benefit both parties.

Finally, a well-developed contract includes detailed insurance provisions. In addition to identifying the exact coverage each party will carry, it should also detail how claims will be handled and dispute resolution processes. This will protect the contractor from unnecessary risks and ensure both parties can meet their obligations. When insurance issues cannot be resolved, a Memorandum of Understanding can mark the terms under which work will commence and allow for later renegotiation.

The contract administration process is essential because it sets clear guidelines for all parties involved in the construction project. It includes everything from effective communication management to accurately recording all instructions and documents. This type of record-keeping is important because it ensures everyone has access to the same information, which can help prevent misunderstandings and disputes on a construction site.

When a contract is being established, the contracts administrator is responsible for clarifying and establishing the terms of an agreement between the company and the client. This includes ensuring that all relevant parties understand the terms, including key stakeholders and internal departments. The contract administrator is also tasked with managing change orders, which are modifications to the original contract due to design changes, unforeseen conditions, or additional work required. They must accurately assess the impact of these changes on costs and timelines.

Another crucial aspect of this role is ensuring that all contractors and subcontractors adhere to the contract’s terms throughout the construction project. This may involve ensuring that the correct materials are being used, verifying that all required inspections are performed, and assessing how these factors affect the final product and project budget. The contract administrator must also manage the valuation and payment processes, ensuring that all material quantities are properly accounted for, confirming that off-site materials are being delivered as promised and that all contract instructions are followed.

Subcontractors are independent business people who perform specialized tasks on construction projects for the general contractor. They are hired to reduce project risks and often bring the experience and expertise the GC needs. Depending on the scope of a particular job, a general contractor may need to employ many subcontractors, while other jobs only require one or two specialists.

As a result, the contractor’s responsibility for ensuring that all lower-tier subcontractors are properly accounted for can be challenging. This involves collecting lien waivers from all individuals and businesses that have worked on the project, which can be lengthy when multiple layers of subcontractors are involved.

Subcontractors play a critical role in executing specialized scopes of work that ripple through project timelines and overall outcomes. Selecting the right trade partners during prequalification is key to ensuring seamless coordination and communication. When evaluating specialty contractors, GCs often assess their insurance coverage, safety track record, references, and financial stability.

Once the project team is in place, GCs should proactively communicate expectations for quality, schedule, cost, and milestones. They should also set clear ground rules regarding how they expect their subcontractors to communicate issues and collaborate on solutions. It’s also important for GCs to establish a culture of open communication, as this can help minimize costly disputes and rework.

Throughout construction, GCs should regularly assess budgeted vs actual costs and promptly address any deviations. This helps safeguard against unwarranted financial surprises and prevents them from impacting project deliverables. Moreover, fostering collaboration with trade partners on potential value engineering opportunities reduces project costs without affecting quality or schedule.

Finally, GCs should ensure they receive quality work from their subcontractors by reviewing invoices and payment requests. This will enable them to ensure they’re getting what they pay for, ensuring their subcontractors meet their contractual obligations and deadlines.

To facilitate the process, GCS needs the proper construction management software to help them track all of the data. This includes labor requests, assignments, photos, and other details that must be managed properly.

Providing subcontractors with access to the right field operations and safety data is also crucial. For example, a good GC can provide a consolidated view of all the subcontractor’s safety and field operation data in one place using a powerful safety software solution. They can even drill down to the individual worker’s level of certification and participation in different projects. This provides a clear picture of the contractor’s overall performance and allows them to address any areas of concern. This way, they can improve the quality of their service and keep their contracts with their clients.