I've spent a lot of time this week talking to clients about sub-contractors and their attitudes on site, which not to put too fine a point on it leaves a lot to be desired. The main problems revolve around:
1. Being held to ransom over rates of pay and prices on the job
2. Leaving the job early or just walking off the job because "it's not going right", or "I can't make any money here."
3. Deciding at the last minute to leave you in the lurch because they've got a better offer of more money at another job
4. Impacting on your own employees who adopt the same practices of of sub contractors, while having a contract of employment which is conveniently ignored
5. No loyalty to you or your business, whilst expecting you to provide them with work
Does this ring a bell with you? Now, there is no simple solution to this as sub-contractors are a necessary evil aren't they? Or are they? What if there were another way that you could cut them out of the picture altogether, not be held to ransom and have to give your profit away to people who you felt didn't deserve it? How would they react them, having to price work, write quotes and do the work, some of which is done for them?
I've been talking to a client this week, where we're looking at a different model. It does have consequences, one of which is that he has to go back on the tools for some time to make it work, But he's prepared to do this to have the business he wants to deliver quality to his clients. It also means that he can manage his costs better, retain his profit, bring new people into the industry and reward his trusted people, who've been with him since the start. Oh and he's also got about 4 years of work ahead of him, just on one contract!
The thing with sub contractors is that they live in the short term world of, "how much can I earn this week," rather than the longer term world of "I can earn for 4 years" and this small minded approach will actually hold them back, and in this case, lose them work. Bit of bad luck they're having then isn't it?
If you recognise or are suffering from the symptoms mentioned above, then we can help you change your business model and potentially get you funding too. Why not get in touch and we can have a chat...