Seven deadly sins of contractor and subcontractor management

Are you covering the basics of contractor and subcontractor management? Whether you employ 20 or 200 contractors and subcontractors, liability risks are ever present. But finding time to check capability, manage manpower and monitor progress is difficult, says Len Simmons, Chief Operating Officer.


A robust contractor management system will help ensure minimum standards are met on site and help you avoid the following  seven big  sins when managing contractors and sub contractors.

1 – Failure to hold contractor and sub contractor information or verify  it

Make sure that you have information on every contractor and sub-contractor that comes on site. You and other members of your organisation should be able to access this information quickly.

The types of information you need to collect will vary based on the trade each individual practices, so a standardised information collection form won’t be enough.

Have any contractors or sub contractors been on your books for a long time? Don’t trust that your records will be up to date. Qualifications expire and circumstances change. You should check your records at least once a year and update them if they are no longer accurate.

2 – Lack of communication with your staff

Collecting information and making sure its accurate is important, but if staff appoint unverified contractors then your valuable time has been well and truly wasted.

Make sure processes are in place for choosing and approving contractors and make sure staff at each level of the organisation are aware of supplier practices.

3 – No policies or  rules

Policies and rules lay the foundations for what you expect from contractors and sub contractors.

Without them, project errors can and will occur. These can be expensive and lead to reputational damage. Set out what is expected at the start of your supplier relationship and make sure contractors and sub contractors stick to the rules.

4 – No  contracts or specifications

A binding contract is what compels a contractor or sub contractor to finish a job to your specifications. Make sure you communicate all your requirements at the start of a job and get them down in writing. New contracts should also be issued when the requirements of a job change considerably.

5 – No restraint updates

You have laid down the rules and agreed a contract.  Now you need to take account of your responsibilities.

Have you told contractors about that access door or the exposure to heat they will endure on site? You are responsible for all restraints and controls that could hinder contractors and sub contractors, so make sure they are briefed thoroughly and updated regularly.

 6 – Poor auditing (or no auditing at all)

When it comes to auditing,  technology is preferable to reams of paper. But large, complicated spreadsheets aren’t much better.  Cloud software solutions like Altius Exigo Essentials, provide an easier and more sophisticated platform to audit contractors and sub contractors.

7 – No goals to achieve

It’s often said that what doesn’t get measured, just doesn’t get done. Setting  and tracking Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for your contractors and sub contractors will keep them focused and  reveal exactly where you are getting value for money and  quality service.

Make managing contractors and sub contractors easy

It’s difficult to keep on top of compliance when managing contractors and sub contractors.  Altius’ cloud based compliance software will help you reduce risk, cut costs and save time – giving you complete visibility and peace of mind in your suppliers.

Take a look at the Exigo video and request a demo of the software

Further information

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