If you have been in the construction industry long enough as a contractor, you are not new to the communication challenges contractors face with different architects. The fragmented nature of the construction industry is such that once the construction project is completed and closed out, the contractor hands over the project to the client and moves on to another project, with a new consultancy team. For this reason, contractors continuously face challenges in understanding new architects in every new project they undertake.
A good and efficient working relationship with the architect is key in the project implementation phase. Miscommunications between the architect and the contractor can often lead to general contractor insurance claims, reworks and even dismissal of the contractor. To avoid this, below are some tips to help you understand your architect better:
Architectural drawings and specifications are specifically prepared by the architect for actualization by the contractors. Therefore, as the technical implementers of these drawings, it is critical for the contractor to understand all the details, symbols and specifications in all the drawings issued in order to deliver works to the satisfaction of the architect and client.
There are several articles, blogs, video tutorials, e-courses, and other online resources that a contractor can easily access if currently having challenges interpreting the architectural drawings.
It is important to go through all the drawings with the architect to capture all the key details and specifications. This also gives the contractor an opportunity to raise any concerns with regards to the technologies and material specifications and suggest better alternatives.
For contractors to protect themselves from unpaid claims, it is important to ensure that any instructions from the architect are in written form and signed. This acts as proof in case a contractor has to claim for constructive changes and variations or apply for an extension of time. The instructions signed by the architect may act as proof for change of scope on the contractor’s work and indemnify the Contractor from any costs related to reworks as a result of design changes.
The contract documents always stipulate the right steps to be taken by the contractor in case of any changes or concerns. The contractor should use the right channels to request for any missing information, without making assumptions as to the details. In case there is more than one distinct way of handling new technologies or materials, it is important to seek the architect’s opinion on their preferred method, or to suggest expert consultation of the product manufacturers on the best method suited to that specific project.
No business relationship is perfect. Things go wrong on every construction project. Even if it isn’t your fault you can be found liable. You could find yourself facing expensive claims that would cripple your small contractor business. If you’re unsure about the best coverage against insurance claims, your questions can be answered by experienced insurance agents at Small Business Liability.
It is the contractor’s duty to ensure that the project is executed as per the architect’s instructions. Therefore the contractor should make every effort to ensure that the project is carried out to the architect’s satisfaction at all times. Applying these 5 tips in your trade will help you to better understand your project architect and therefore result in a more efficient implementation process. These tips will help you to build your reputation as being a contractor who knows what they are doing.
ASK JOHN FOR THE BEST INSURANCE QUOTE YOU’LL GET ALL DAY!