• Nancy Netherland

What Do Leading Developers Want From Contractors?


The construction industry is booming, and with so much competition for lucrative construction contracts, it is more important than ever that contractors know what developers want—and expect—from them.


Working closely with construction managers on behalf of one of the world’s largest developers has helped lay out a very clear picture of what makes a contractor stand out to potential clients.


Developers want contractors who are not only experienced and skilled but also personally invested and confident in their work. That means they are more likely to trust contractors who do three crucial things:


Proactively solve problems; treat a property owner’s money like it is their own; and drive the construction process by making crucial decisions when necessary.


Throughout various stages of the construction process, contractors can be faced with many challenges to the agreed-on design, whether it be while working on millwork, high-end finished details or ornamental metal details on compound angles. In situations like these, construction managers must be able to propose creative, in-the-field solutions that provide an answer to the problem for the design team

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Being proactive in problem-solving and addressing issues early on helps avoid construction delays that impact the overall schedule of a development. And staying on track with the planned schedule as much as possible is vital for adhering to the arranged budget and keeping the developer satisfied.


It is equally important for contractors to treat a developer’s financial investment in the project as if it were coming out of their own pocket. Contractors must place a high priority on managing expenses and ensuring that work remains in line with the budget. And while that is always easy to say, anyone who has dealt with a substandard contractor can tell you that it is not always the reality.


When it comes to trying to keep costs as low as possible, even a short period of inattentiveness can be disastrous. As a result, contractors should constantly be looking for the best buy and value at every step of the construction process, as leading developers seek contractors that will use a developer’s money as if it is his own.


Finally, contractors must be willing and able to drive the process and make educated decisions, especially during the pre-construction process. Developers look for construction managers who are open to taking control of the construction process and are eager to get things done.


There are thousands of different roadblocks each day that could halt a contractor’s work. But it is incumbent on the construction manager to find a workaround. Good contractors are constantly pushing the ball forward and continually considering a “plan B” in case the original plan does not end up being the best or most practical plan. Quality contractors are aware that finding alternative solutions to problems comes with a certain level of risk—but they understand they must consistently be advancing the process by making educated decisions, even when roadblocks appear.


Simply put, construction projects create extreme demands on a developer’s time and resources—and there are few things more important than finding a quality contractor that is always thinking one step ahead and actively looking to address any issues that may arise. These kinds of contractors directly contribute to a project’s success and are the ones who are more likely to win the best contracts.


via CE

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