Why is selecting good builders who are on time, on budget and meet quality standards no longer enough?
Selecting a good builder is a common request of many developers, however the real issue should be selecting the RIGHT builder.
At present, a typical selection process starts with a short list of builders that are renowned for their pricing. Of course price matters - it must unless profit is not a key driver of the project.
The primary focus at the outset should be on ‘matching’ a raft of other important factors including - a builder’s expertise and specialist competencies - their financial capacity - their current and future pipeline workload - the ability to anticipate and mitigate problems with win-win solutions - their systems and processes - and equally if not more important, their temperament.
Rarely considered, temperament can be described as a builder’s culture, ability to handle pressure situations including owning-up to its errors, contractual and moral responsibilities. Understanding this characteristic requires a detailed knowledge of the builder’s integrity, their values, and attitude towards clients.
If price were the only benchmark, development and project managers could simply implement and impose stricter contractual processes to deal with cost issues – a more rounded and far better approach when selecting a building contractor is to understand their character.
The classic industry trio of ‘on Time, on Budget, and to Quality expectations’ is dated to say the least - these are now the norm and are expected of all building contractors – big and small. These are not values or guiding beliefs of a building company, but easily measured deliverables.
Today we need to explore and ask more probing questions and seek real evidence of a builder’s purpose, that is, what is there 'WHY?'
Builders who truly understand business success and, more specifically development success, would appreciate this simple concept and who are most likely to offer long term, sustainable value to their clients.
Contractors who respect and understand the increasing complexities of the development process stand out in the current market – this will only be magnified over the coming years. Adaptable, approachable, knowledgeable, and solution-focused describes those builders that will become increasingly sought after.
Builders need to entrench themselves in the early design phase and be at the table early, to better understand funding requirements and consumer expectations.
Selecting ‘good’ builders who are on time, on budget and meet quality standards is no longer enough.
About Author: Sebastian has 36 years in the property industry & an extensive range of experience in
Property Development & Building Construction having being in involved in all aspects of the procurement & delivery
process for both small & large commercial retail, residential, office & industrial projects across Australia.
Co-Founder of DevOp3