• Protocol documents: How are you managing your sites and your team during this time? What provisions are in place if someone gets sick? How are you managing infection spread on the daily?
Creating a document of all of your building inspectors to leave at each house they visit for building reports, a short one pager outlining what you do to manage contagion. State the use of hand sanitiser before and after, keep gloves and masks at the ready if needed, don’t shake hands….. etc. Leave this document behind at every house you visit with contact details should any one need to get in contact to say they have become sick and to self-isolate. Why? You want to be seen as professional dealing with this.
• Starting new jobs: Or pricing a job for the future, make sure you add in something around the supply of goods and potential delays. Overseas items that a client may want could be delayed in getting to NZ, the delay of important items to finish a project shouldn’t really be something you wear the cost of, so you want to encourage clients to make decisions about fixtures and fittings even earlier than you normally would so that they have a chance of arriving in time. Which leads us too…
• Material Shortages: Do you have control of your stock? Do you have enough for the jobs booked? It also may be that they do arrive early and you need somewhere secure to store them, bear this in mind too when you are pricing your P&Gs, is a lock up or similar needed? If you are pricing alongside other builders, he who has materials readily available is going to be preferred to get the job done. So what plans do you have in place for this?
• Delays/Sickness: If delays occur onsite because of sickness or self isolation within your own team, how will you manage those? What will the process be to notify your client? If half your team has to take a month off to look after their kids, how will you manage that?
Your P&G items that are time dependent (think fence hire, scaff hire, etc) are going get blown out of the water. One way is to offer a provisional sum for those items, and make sure you are vigilant about communicating that AND making sure it goes both ways. By using a provisional sum you aren’t giving a fixed price for it, just a cost indication. If it blows out you can discuss a VO with your client, and similarly if it comes in under your allowance then you can do a negative variation instead.
Just remember if you are going down this track you need epic communication with your client. Firstly, to explain it initially, and secondly to make sure you client is aware AS SOON as it needs to be discussed. Throwing it at them at the end of the project is only going to wind them up, and you want to leave your project on good terms so they recommend you to all their mates!