In recent years, many Florida general contractors have chosen to self-perform instead of subcontracting safety work. Self-performing is an enticing option to general contractors who think it will increase their profit margins. However, GC’s should think twice before making the decision to self-perform safety work.
Things to Consider About Self-Performing
As a general contractor, your company’s reputation is on the line with each project you work on. Choosing to self-perform safety work can mean taking on many risks that could not only ruin your reputation but put the safety of those involved in the project at risk. Here are some things you should consider when it comes to self-performing:
- Will self-performing really increase your profit margins?
- Do you have the level of expertise and trained workforce to handle safety work?
- Will work be delayed because your crew doesn’t have the experience or skills to install, maintain or relocate safety items?
- Does your company have experience installing, maintaining, and removing temporary protections in a way that is efficient and cost effective?
- Are you exposing yourself to higher risk and more liability by overseeing safety with your own crew?
- What about the increase in in costs such as insurance, salaries and overhead expenses?
After weighing your options, it will probably become clear that self-performing safety work is not going to be as profitable as it seems and will come with great risk to your company.
Safety & Liability Risks
There are many safety risks that come with self-performing safety work. When you work with a subcontractor that is specially trained to handle safety work, you’ll be improving the safety of your workers. Properly installing and maintain temporary safety protections can take years of experience. By hiring a subcontractor that is well-versed on construction safety, you will be working with people who are experts when it comes to safety standards and regulations. Your own crew will not be able to achieve the same level of safety as they try to handle something that is not within their expertise.
When you perform safety work with your own crew, you will be exposed to higher risk and more liability. Any accidents or fatalities that occur on the job will be the responsibility of the general contractor when work is self-performed. When you work with a subcontractor, you will have less liability when it comes to safety.
Perhaps the biggest draw for self-performing is the hope of increasing profit margins. However, there are many costs that can come with it. Costs such as insurance, salaries, overhead expenses, business taxes, and bond are increased when you choose to self-perform safety work. In addition, if any accidents occur you will be charged with fines and OSHA violations which will take a big hit on your budget.
Also, a GC may not fully understand the cost of safety work which could cause them to underbid on a project and lose money. Not to mention, it will be more cost-efficient to work with a safety contractor who has years of experience and knows how to efficiently perform safety work.
Any time you are spreading your workers too thin, your quality of work will suffer. When working with a subcontractor that is an expert on safety, you can leave the safety work to them and allow your workers to focus on what they are experts at doing.
The Risk of Not Meeting Deadlines
Another risk you will be taking if you self-perform safety work is not meeting deadlines. When you have not performed safety work before, you may drastically underestimate the time that it is going to take you to install, maintain, relocate and remove safety items. Being able to do safety work efficiently and cost-effectively takes years of experience. Most subcontractors have achieved economies of scale that are difficult for general contractors to replicate when they are not well-versed in safety work. When you can’t efficiently self-perform you run the risk of not meeting deadlines or a failed job which would be very costly.
TSCSE: A South Florida Subcontractor
Make the smart decision and choose to work with a subcontractor for your safety work. The team at TSC Southeast can perform safety work efficiently and in cost-effective manner. Don’t take on the added risks of self-performing and choose to work with a subcontractor that is an expert when it comes to safety.