Commercial construction is a complex, and ever-evolving industry. New commercial buildings go up every day, but very few people understand what goes on behind the scenes. Only those in the construction industry fully understand the hurdles construction managers must clear in order to build a structurally-sound commercial building on-time and on-budget. Here’s a breakdown of the top five challenges today’s commercial construction manager must overcome.
Green building has been expanding over recent years, including the commercial construction realm. There are a myriad new products and technologies which can be implemented into a new commercial building to make it more efficient. In addition, a number of strict laws have been put in place to protect both the natural environment and public health. It’s important for project managers to have a clear understanding of permit requirements and environmental requirements they must adhere to and oversee. Failure to do so can delay a project, harm a company’s reputation, and lead to potential fines, civil action, or even criminal prosecution.
Government Regulation & Outside Pressure
Commercial contractors today face increasing government regulation from federal, state, county, and local governments. From restrictive local building codes and licensing requirements to permit requirements, environmental and safety laws and more. Adhering to these regulations can prove to be costly and limiting at times.
Social and political pressures can impact a job’s timeline more today than in the past. Projects can be stalled as a result of community or political pressure. Everyone from adjacent property owners, businesses, or institutions—as well as civic organizations and community groups may want their say in the process. It’s wise to have an understanding of the moving parts concerned so any rising issues can easily be dealt with.
Safety & Health Concerns
There are more fatal injuries in construction than any other industry. On any given day there are roughly 252,000 active construction sites and 6.5 million workers exposed to workplace safety hazards like falls, trench or scaffold collapses, electrical shock, and injuries tied to equipment use or repetitive or strenuous motion.
In addition to human suffering, the financial hit construction companies take from workplace accidents is astronomical. It’s estimated that accidents annually account for $10 billion in construction costs.
While accidents can and will happen, commercial construction managers must prioritize workplace safety protocol and take precautions for the sake of their workers and business. Most workplace accidents or deaths are found to be avoidable if training or safety measures were implemented properly.
Skilled Worker Shortage
Here at Baratto Brothers, we’re fully aware a commercial contractor’s greatest asset is their team. While we’ve been lucky when it comes to finding (and keeping) highly-skilled and experienced employees, construction itself is often seen as a less-than-desirable industry to get into. The work is physically demanding, dirty, and can be downright dangerous. Projects are inconsistent and there is always that threat of a lull with incoming work when seasons change or if there’s an economic downturn.
Time is Money
When a commercial construction company is hired by a property owner or tenant, a return on that party’s investment is expected. Lost revenue due to delays contributing to the loss of customers, clients, or tenants is unacceptable. This often means a high volume of work must be completed within a tight time frame on a strict budget. Construction project managers have the responsibility of setting forth a comprehensive plan. Then, they must closely monitor progress to ensure they stay on track and can swiftly react when something goes sideways.
Construction involves a bunch of interdependent activities cohesively coming together as one in the end. Naturally, this presents challenges other industries typically don’t encounter. Seasonal weather, remote sites with access issues, occupied work spaces, neighboring properties, and equipment breakdown or malfunction are just a few potential challenges. Any one of them can wreak havoc on a day’s productivity and the project’s overall timeline. It’s up to the commercial project manager be prepared to identify changing conditions and upcoming challenges, then mitigate their impact.
Let us help
As you can see, commercial construction is a complicated, challenging, and ultimately rewarding industry. If you’re interested in starting a new commercial construction project, renovation, or just curious about what we offer at Baratto Brothers, contact us today by filling out our contact form, stopping in to say hello, or by giving us a call at (218) 692-1070. We’re here to help you sift through your options, and come up with an affordable plan that delivers the results you’re looking for. We’ll do everything we can to become your Commercial Builder for Life.