There is a lot of education needed in our industry about compliance. The need for contractor compliance is reaching levels that it has never been near before: So, we would like to educate not just users of our software, but educate the industry about contractor compliance.
There are a lot of different types of businesses of all sizes within our industry, from retail chains, restaurants, to hotels, etc. Struggles with managing a distributed portfolio of qualified contractors is one thing that a lot of businesses have in common. Some companies do it from a centralized standpoint where they manage everything out of one office. Others are decentralized and have regional offices. At the end of the day, it all rolls up into one company, one headquarters that is ultimately responsible for assets.
The ways contractor compliance has been managed is very diverse. Generally it's been up to the field. Contractor compliance has been managed by anyone from:
- property managers,
- facility managers,
- operations, etc.
In the past, any manager could be charged with the responsibility of corporate compliance. A lot of times it wasn't even in writing that they were responsible for making sure that contractors were qualified. It is usually left at that.
The cost of maintaining these properties, of ensuring the health and safety of guests, consumers, and staff are all involved. Ultimately, when personal injury or property damage claims happen, who is everybody looking at? The top of the food chain. Real example: a contractor had replaced a mirror in a store; it wasn’t installed properly; and the mirror ended up crashing upon a kid; the contractor wasn’t insured. There are many such examples as these that happen everyday in the real world. Work is being done, and if something happens… and if the contractor is not licensed & insured, then the retailer is held responsible (million-dollar lawsuits).
There is a misconception that using someone who has a lot of insurance or a lot of training and credentials is going to cost more money. I've seen it through my career over and over again. There is this idea that it costs more to hire someone more qualified, and some would rather take the risk (and reduce costs). This a double-edged sword - if something happened they still might be ahead of the game. It is a very dangerous model to follow.
Have you ever had this backfire? Have you ever chosen to hire someone less qualified - hoping to save money - but had it cost more (time and money) in the end? You can keep your comments anonymous: Help out a fellow facilities manager and share what has really happened to you or those around you.