Construction workers are trained to solve issues on the job, but what about the problems that may arise before the job has started? Purchasing is a large part of the trade and it is crucial to trust your supplier. You’ve probably been given direction and tips on buying, but how about what not to do? We sat down with ModSpace Purchasing Manager, Phil Kolaskey who told us about five purchasing pitfalls for construction.
Price: Less isn’t more.
Be careful buying the least expensive products and materials. The lowest price is usually the least value, and the most headaches. Account for equipment as well as labor when planning, and be sure to factor size and location into your budget. These variables can dramatically raise shipping costs.
Market conditions, especially for commodities.
Don’t forget to consider current events, market conditions and commodity trends. These indicators can help you predict price increases and properly adjust your bid.
Similarly, natural disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, etc. can affect the cost of materials, especially lumber and sheet stock. Depending on the severity of an event, demand and pricing can change dramatically.
Time is money.
Not being on time is usually more money. Don’t wait until the last minute to purchase your equipment and materials, as you’re likely to pay more for expedited delivery. Factories and manufacturing centers short on materials may be forced to halt production. In the event the plant workers can continue without the missing material, extra time and labor are involved on their end.
Meanwhile, these missing materials can cause delays on your job site and may incur monetary penalties by not meeting predetermined deadlines.
Quality: Choose a trusted brand for and by your customer.
Avoid buying materials without learning about them first. Find out what your customer wants. Familiarize yourself with different brands so that the correct items can be used for pricing the bid and in the final product. Double check all specifications and requirements. Failing to do so can lead to costly errors.
Reputation: Know your supplier.
Don’t make any purchases without doing your homework first. Research multiple suppliers. A reputable company can save you from additional complications for the duration of the job.
Be sure to ask for a certificate of insurance. Build relationships with your suppliers and the individuals who support them. Suppliers that understand and appreciate your business will make sure lead times are understood and met. A provider you can trust will help you immediately, and in the long run.