Creating Lasting Relationships with Sub-Trades, Architects and Consultants

By Daniel Aquino
January 31, 2017

One of the most valuable things a general contractor can do is build lasting relationships with the sub-trades, architects and consultants they work with. Contractors, sub-trades and clients all reap the benefits of established partnerships, for reasons of trust, quality and cost-effectiveness.

From a contractor perspective, the mutual trust that develops over long working relationships makes it far more likely that projects will be delivered on time and under budget. Sub-trades who fail to deliver are weeded out over time, leaving a core of quality suppliers who understand the importance of completing projects on schedule and to a high standard. Communication is easier between parties who know they work well together, and processes become streamlined with practice.

On the other side of the equation, a desire to maintain the relationship motivates sub-trades to go the extra mile to ensure a successful project. Knowing they can depend upon the support of a general contractor who values their input and treats them with professional respect empowers consultants to take initiative and resolve problems creatively. Crucially, when a general contractor has a record of paying for work and materials on time, risk is reduced from the sub-trades’ perspective. This, in turn, helps prevent delays on site.

Finally, solid relationships between all parties benefit the client. The contractor can negotiate better prices from sub-trades who prefer working with them, which naturally results in cost savings. The sub-trades, architects and consultants engaged by the general contractor are already known to produce quality work, helping ensure a build that meets or exceeds client expectations. Better planning, prompt payments and motivated sub-trades all increase the likelihood of on-time completion, helping ensure the client can move in on schedule.

Like any relationship, long-term working partnerships take effort to create and maintain. While each is unique, general contractors can foster strong relationships by observing a few universal rules. Honesty breeds honesty. Respectful and open dialogue clears roadblocks. Consistently delivering on promises tends to encourage sub-trades to do the same. There is also no substitute for time; some of Aquicon’s most rewarding partnerships with other businesses span not just years but generations. It’s a process we commit to for the long haul.

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