Selecting the wrong contractor for a project may result in delays, mistakes and financial loss. Be sure to first create an evaluation matrix that includes important assessment factors. Ranking and prioritizing the most important criteria will lead to a better understanding of project requirements, expectations and objectives.
Select the Right Person to Select the Contractor
Before you select the contractor, consider choosing the right person to make the hiring decision. Remember that different people will have different priorities and strengths, so it’s important to choose someone who has ample experience, industry insight and project support. For instance, one person may focus on the aesthetic and artistic capabilities of the contractor, but another may focus on adherence to budgets and schedules. The decision maker should be someone who has had both good and bad experiences with a variety of contractors. They should understand the collective needs of the group and goals of the project. They should use the evaluation matrix to objectively judge and select the most suitable candidates.
Identify and Establish Relevant Skills and Qualifying Experience
All contractors will claim that they can handle any type of project regardless the scale and budget. However, contractors may only have experience with certain structures, such as restaurants and public facilities, or projects, such as kitchen remodeling and clean-up assignments. A contractor who has successfully finished one hundred bathroom remodel projects may not be the best candidate for a re-roofing project. Most contracting experiences are not the same in small scale design, remodel, renovation and building projects. Contractors who have always taken on new construction projects will fully appreciate the limitations and challenges of a new proposal. These contractors will have the creativity and flexibility needed to successfully overcome problems and complete the project.
Use an Industry Expert
HR professionals often call on departmental heads or experienced employees to participate in interview with highly trained candidates for specialty positions. A regular person will be unable to ask the right questions and understand the correct answers regarding complex topics in finance, information technology and even construction management. An experienced industry professionals should only be called in on the final interviews with the top few candidates. These individuals will play a significant role in testing the contractor regarding product knowledge, project quality, project management, realistic expectations and industry standards. The ideal contractor will have a rich depth of building experience related to the design, planning and execution phases. They will be able to logically and factually defend their decisions and proposals.
Finally, be sure to employ creative reference checking techniques. References provided by the contractors will always lead to satisfied clients. Therefore, call vendors and subcontractors to discuss their experiences regarding the contractor’s timeliness, consistency and management style.