Category Archives: Construction

Plan your budget for a new project

When you are a part of an industry and are doing well, you are tend to get more work. It is probably you have created a reputation over the years that now people believe in you and therefore give more business to you. So whenever you are given a new task, you need to plan few things in advance. Do you have the required human resource to get the work done in time? Is your financial reserve sound enough to take care of any additional requirements that will come out from a new business and many more of such questions should be answered first. These are tough questions for any business and the answers can’t come out of one’s head swiftly. There will be a lot of pondering that needs to be done when there is a chance of getting some new projects.

Moving our focus towards the construction segment, a business owner has to go through the same set of questions but for him the answers are far more difficult as compared to any other person belonging to some different industry.

Basically he needs to plan his budget bit differently than people from other sectors do. He even has to estimate the estimates. Now this is really difficult and can be confusing to many. When we talk about estimating the estimate, it means that the owner of a construction company have to estimate some rough estimates of the cost to the company. For instance, he estimates the cost of raw materials may increase and if it increases then what could be the price. So what is the highest point can he take his estimation is estimating the estimate. So in the above example, he is already estimating that the price of the raw material will increase and then he is further estimating the highest point that it may reach. Similarly, he can have estimation on anything that concerns his business. These estimations are crucial as it takes you closer to the actual.

Once you have made a rough estimation, the next step is to align it well with your budget. You may know your financial position much better than anybody else and therefore preparing a budget based on the estimations will be highly fruitful. It will take you closer to your goal and slowly and steadily you will start seeing things getting more realistic. It is only because of your in-depth planning that you can come so close to the realistic figures. They may not be accurate but certainly will be well-defined.

After you match up your financial position to the market estimate, you get to understand if entering into a new venture is anyway going to be profitable to you. Getting it discussed with your team is a healthy way to move forward and you might come across some really valuable suggestions from your team members. Taking advices from the seniors of your company will help you take precise decisions. So by planning your budget for a new project, you understand if you should put your hands into it or postpone it for some time.

Protect workers engaged in excavation and trenching works

The Occupational Safety and health Administration and laid down some stringent laws that protects the rights of the laborers engaged in perilous job activities. Now it becomes the onus of the construction companies to follow those laws or else the license to continue business will get scrapped. Just one complaint from anybody and if the authorities find that the laws were not followed it can pose a lot of problem to the construction company. This is why it is a must to all the construction companies that they take uttermost care in ensuring that the workers working in perilous conditions are provided with enough protection so that if there happens to be an untoward incident the number of casualty is limited. Dangers are immense for construction workers that are engaged in excavation and trenching works. Though both excavation and trenching are different from each other but they both carry enough risk that may cause huge casualty and therefore enough care needs to be taken to protect the life of the workers.

Before any excavation or trenching work begins, the construction company should do a thorough study of the soil. It will help them understand the kind of risk one has to undergo and also the kind of precautionary steps the company needs to take to ensure the lives of all the workers are protected. No soil from two different places is similar to each other and therefore when the excavation process begins the soil may act differently. Trenching work is more difficult than excavation work and time and again it has been observed how important it is to understand the soil composition first and then start with the trenching work. Pre-planning of excavation or trenching work is also equally important. There are many things that one needs to take into consideration and plan everything in advance to the initiation of the project. Companies who are experienced in excavation works do not take pre-planning lightly and understand its importance towards the success of the project.

For companies that are new into excavation work, they need to be little careful with what they do. First and foremost they need to prepare a checklist of the things that they require and the things that they need to check prior to starting the work. Things such as the weather of the place, the traffic around the place, soil classification, the surface and the ground water, overhead and underground utilities etc. needs to be checked. These things should be known to the company before it places bids on the project. Once that is done it also needs to check the number of ladders it may require, the fall protection needs, safety equipment needs etc. They can gather much of this information from the local authority officials and other utility companies. This will help him to figure out an approximate cost to the project and also the cost of the safety equipment he need to garner to ensure the project is completed safely and without any harm to any of its employees.

Use of internet to solve heavy equipment problems

We often depend on technology to fix problems that has been created on a technological produce. We are now at a stage where we can’t take a step forward without the involvement of technology and that actually should be the case. The more you use technology the better it will make your life. It is just that you do not become completely dependent on it or else you will find it difficult to live without it. Too much of dependency on anything can be fatal and one must realize this before it gets completely out of hand. However, when it comes to taking help of technology to fix problems that has been the product of technology one should not refrain from doing so. In the construction business which involves small contactors who can’t afford to hire mechanics to fix small issues often do things on their own. They just can’t afford to pay the fees that a mechanic charges to fix a machine and therefore they believe in doing things themselves.

Blog can be helpful:-

If you encounter a specific problem with the heavy equipment and you do not know what should be done to get rid of it, try to log in to net and check if someone has created a blog pertaining to the issue. If there is a blog addressing the problem you can expect to find some help there? Just read through the blog, the questions posed by people and the resolutions that some has left. It may leave you awestruck upon reading suggestions that are extremely out of the world. They will speak about workarounds that are hard to believe but if you apply them practically it may get rid of the problem once and for all. Blogs have been extremely helpful to many amateurs who have just started their journey in the construction world and does not know much about heavy equipment.

Articles can at times do the trick:-

Articles on heavy equipment can at times be really beneficial to solve a particular problem. If the writer has stressed on one particular issue and has written in length about the possible workarounds it can prove to be really helpful for the read to get rid of the issue. Articles are lengthy and therefore one can expect a lot of workarounds for a single issue.

Hire mechanics online:-

We can even hire a mechanic online. Mechanics often post their work on internet and also allows others to hire them to fix problems. Their charges may differ and that can be negotiated over the phone or when once you meet them. Nevertheless, internet has provided them with an option to post their services online and since most of the things today happen online they can even sell their services on that platform.

Make use of training videos:-

Guys who do not want to involve a mechanic to fix heavy equipment problems can make use of online videos that teaches people to fix heavy equipment. They may use a bit of technical jargons. Hence the person who is following the video should be acquainted with the terms.

Communication is key for a heavy equipment operator!

Have you ever been to a construction site? There are so many things that go on – creating the foundation for the structure, moving of the heavy construction equipment, workers randomly moving and working here and there! It is quite possible that you hurt yourself, if you are not properly aware of what is going on and where.

Proper safety gears must be worn and used by everyone who is working as well as moving about in the construction site. At some place, there might be some concrete construction going on and on the other side, there can be structures of glass being made. Being careless can be dangerous for you as well as for others.

What needs to be done?

Very construction site follows some basic safety measures such as –

  • Wearing safety gears – high visibility jackets, eye protection gears, helmets etc.
  • There are boards and signs that clearly indicate the actions or steps that need to be taken
  • Things that are prohibited and should not be done.

Whether you are a worker or even a visitor at the construction site, you need to make sure that all these measures are followed by you.

Operating the Heavy Construction Equipment:

Heavy construction equipment is something that cannot be operated by everyone. It needs skill, training and certificate. Therefore, when you are about to operate the heavy construction equipment such as loaders, excavators or backhoes, lifts or cranes, it is a must that you communicate well with the other workers.

The heavy construction equipment often moves very fast and swiftly. Within a fraction of a second and just by clicking on a single button or by moving the steering handle or joystick slightly, the lifts, cranes or the buckets can move swiftly from one direction to the other. Hence, the unaware and inattentive workers can get hurt or harmed by the movement of the heavy construction equipment.

On the other hand, it is also quite not possible to remove the workers from the construction site. The reason is that the workers do all the manual labour and make sure that the dumping, excavating, lifting and all other construction works are performed well.

How to communicate with the workers?

There are some key factors that the heavy construction equipment operator must keep in mind. The machines or equipment move quite fast and swiftly on all directions. Hence, before pulling or pushing the steering handle, a concerned person must indicate the clearance of the ground. It is only then that the operator should start the task.

On the other hand, the concerned person should communicate with the other field workers. It is only when the workers give thumbs up to proper tie up of the objects that need to be lifted, or the clearance of the excavation ground or the proper direction of the dumping ground that the operator would start the action. Hence, it is a chained or a linked process that is successful only when all the workers and the heavy construction equipment operator communicate together well. To communicate with each other, signs or boards, high frequency lights, torches etc. are frequently used. But the traditionally popular method of communication is two-way radios, though smartphones are also widely used nowadays.

Team work matters most in the construction business

Dreaming big is a good thing but when you want to make your dreams come true you have to follow some very basic principles that will help you reach the place you want to go. The most important principle that you can’t afford to miss is to learn to work in a team. You may be the owner of your business but you should give equal importance to all the members of your company. You should know the importance of your team and how they function and you can know this only when you become a part of them. Working in a team and working as a team are both important factors that one should learn well if you want to take his business to the next level and especially when you are part of a much volatile industry like construction. Construction industry will give you no scope to survive or grow if you do not want to work as a team. Individual players have absolutely no role in this segment of business. They might stay for some time but will not be able to carry it along for long and will see problems erupting which he will find it difficult to manage it alone.

Though this sector is an alluring one and promises to give good returns if you are ready to work hard but just working hard will not take you to the top. You have to also take into account factors like working in a team.

You know where the business is going:-

When you are working alone and try to manage everything on your own, there are high chances that you may miss out on many things. It is never simple to manage a business alone and you need people to whom you will distribute your work so that they can take care of their part and you can take a report from them and understand where the business is heading. This is how it is supposed to work. You doing the work alone will take you nowhere as you will not have the slightest idea what exactly is going on. You will have no one to prepare reports for you and in case you have a department who does this thing, it is crucial that you maintain good rapport with them. In other words, have good team bonding with them which will also help them to work comfortably.

Team work makes things simple:-

In a big construction company, they have many different levels of departments and if there is sync between each department then things become simpler. The progress of work can be understood more clearly. This will also help you to move forward in your business and clear your paths for any possible expansion in the near future. You can have a bird view on the performance of your business if there is proper team work. The level of co-ordination amongst all the teams will define how successful you can become with your business.

Renting a Scraper

Companies which are ideally into earth moving business find Scraper as quite crucial heavy equipment. They may use other heavy equipment as well but a large portion of their business is covered with the help of a scraper. They can’t depend on an excavator or for that matter a grader which is also highly used for landscape or site development work. They need to get the dirt out of the site and for that reason they need nothing less than a scraper. A newbie should rather invest his money into buying machinery that matters the most for his business; for instance, hiring human resources. As far as heavy equipment are concerned they can also be picked up on rent. This brings us to the topic of how big is the rental business when it comes to heavy equipment.

A person who has just set his foot in the construction domain and is finding it hard to come up with the expenses to meet his business requirements, it makes no further sense for him to spend anything on scraper, especially when he has the option to get a Scraper on rent. So is searching an owner who wants to rent his scraper a difficult task. Well, it is not at all a difficult one. All you need to do is go through the right channel to get the scraper you want. You basically have 2 options. The first one is by contacting an rental house who provides different kinds of heavy equipment. So going to him will be useful as you can speak about your needs and you will be suggested accordingly.

Taking help of a rental house also serves another purpose. They may guide you with the best available option which is not possible in any other mode. Just in case you are not sure which model of scraper you should be going with, the guidance of the rental house proves to be fruitful. If the rental equipment company is into this business for a long time, he may have well established contacts with the owners of heavy equipment which mean that you do not have to wait for long to get the scraper and start your work. It also protects the interests of both the parties. So if there is any sort of issue that crops up after the deal, you know whom to catch hold of.

The second option through which you can get a scraper on rent is by becoming a member of an online website that deals with renting heavy equipment. In this case, you need to know the kind of stuff you want for your business as you will have none to advice you. So do your research well and then hunt for the scraper. The online companies tend to protect the interest of both the parties but may not be as effective as the first option. So you need to be sure of what you are doing.

Set up cameras to prevent theft of heavy equipment

If you are operating a business, it becomes your responsibility to ensure that all your business equipment are safe and you prevent them from any risk of theft. Your equipment may have a value in the market but for you it is invaluable and you can’t afford to lose your priceless stuff just because you could not guard it against theft. This also indicates that you are not a good businessman. A person who stands in poor light when it comes to safeguarding his office equipment can never give a good picture of his business skills and therefore it is immensely important that you gear up against the miscreants and ensure that there will be no theft at your place. In the construction business where people deal with expensive machines the chances of it getting robbed is higher. This is why extra steps needs to be taken to make sure that you have the heavy equipment in a safe place that is constantly guarded and no one can get to it.

Install cameras at various points:-

The idea to install cameras at various points can certainly deter wrongdoers to a larger extent. It is evident that these guys are smart and we have to accept that. As long as we do not accept the fact that these troublemakers are smart we will not be able to tackle the problem effectively. Installing cameras can certainly outplay them and they will be apprehended to take a call if they should be going for you or not. Frankly no one wants to get caught and hence they might think of someone else’s construction site rather than yours. They just do not want to come under the lens as that will reveal their identity. You need to set up the cameras at all the important entry and exit points. Also set up a room for the security where he will keep a check on all the points with the help of the visuals. Thus you deploy fewer men to guard the machines and depend more on technology.

Buy cameras with good resolution:-

Since you are setting up cameras to protect heavy equipment from theft you make sure that you buy cameras with good resolution so that it can capture things with clarity. It makes no point in buying cameras that does not have high resolution as you will not be able to identify the face of the person who has committed the crime. It will also become difficult to trace the person if he finds success in stealing the machine. High resolution cameras are however expensive but certainly within the reach of a person who indeed wants his machine to be safe.

Buy branded cameras from designated stores:-

It is advisable that you buy cameras from designated stores and they should be of good brand. You may end up paying more for it but it will be really worth your money. Not all store will keep high end cameras and therefore check the ones that keep such cameras.

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Sell machines that the construction companies need

Construction industry is one of the most established and high profile businesses that are in a popular demand in the recent era. Given the huge population, there is a constant need for more buildings and constructions. Be it for the expansion of the cities or development of the cities or for residential and commercial complexes, some or the other kind of construction is always in progress. And, for making the construction smooth, it is a must that the construction companies are equipped in every possible way.

With more construction assignments, completing the construction faster becomes mandatory. As the demand is always high and there is a pressure from the owners to complete the tasks quicker, construction companies should depend more on the heavy construction equipment; rather than on the manual labour. Machines and tools can make the tasks easier and more accurate.

Buying the heavy construction equipment:

As there is a growing demand of the heavy construction equipment, it is a must that the construction companies buy the most suitable and appropriate machines or equipment. This will make sure that the desired task is done faster and better. The most common heavy construction equipment that one needs to own include –

  • Cranes
  • Excavators
  • Road rollers
  • Crawlers
  • Bulldozers
  • Forklift
  • Backhoes
  • Motor grader
  • Compactors.

Each of the heavy construction equipment has its own function that is absolutely different from the other. Hence, when you are buying these for your construction company, you need to be careful about the one that is most suitable for your company.

Trust the sellers:

There are various construction equipment companies that sell a lot of machines and tools, as well as the large scale construction vehicles. As you visit them, you will find all of the options and different varieties of the construction tools and machines. This can be a little confusing for you to choose the one for you. For that you need to discuss with the heavy construction equipment salesperson.

The salesmen of these businesses are more than just a salesman. They are vastly learned about the functions and benefits of purchasing heavy construction equipment. Hence, as you discuss your needs with them, they will be able to guide you through the different options. This will be quite useful for you to decide which one would be most suitable for you.

The seller would always sell machines that the construction companies need. If the requirement is for a tool or machine that would flatten the workspace, a road roller or compactor would be suggested. If the requirement is a machine that would help the construction companies or workers to load and unload the concrete wastes, dirt and dust and rubbish from a construction site, the seller would suggest a loader. For excavating a ground, an excavator and then a crawler would be more suitable. There are various companies that manufacture these vehicles in different sizes and powers. The best sellers would always be able to guide you about the right machine for you. Depending on the power of the machine, the prices are determined. Trusting the experts is always useful in not spending unnecessarily.

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Operators find it comfortable to work on technologically advanced excavators

In order to speed up the work, you have to give your employees the latest equipment so that they are comfortable using them and can deliver in no time. You can’t use an age old machine and expect your men to complete the work in a stipulated time frame. They just will not be able to do that even if they want to. Same goes in the case of excavators. You can’t expect the operators to excavate a huge portion of land in just few days by giving them an excavator that is perhaps decade old. There is a possibility that the operator may not know its functions properly and might take time to get his hands on the machine or may just not want to work on it. So when you are looking to get a work done in a designated time frame you also need to ensure that you give your operators the equipment that they are comfortable working with.

Heavy equipment manufacturing companies have sensed the pulse of the operators and have therefore manufactured various types of machines that are technologically advanced. These types of machines mostly have automated functions which eases the work of the operator and at the same time lessens the chance of any accidents happening on the jobsite. Now we have several types of excavators in the mining and construction industry such as dragline excavators, bucket wheel excavators which might have existed for decades but the changes that are brought in is from within. For instance, the engine of the machine has been made better. The levers in the machine have been lessened and with the help of just few levers, the operator can handle most of the work.

It seems that there are no major changes made in the concept of the excavator it is just that the changes are made in the interiors which make things convenient for the end user. When heavy equipment companies manufacture excavators, they have to take into consideration a lot of factors. Factors such as if they are manufacturing the excavators for construction industry or for mining industry because the make of the machine will be different for different industries. The requirement of a mining industry will be obviously different from the construction one. They might want some additional features which is not required in the construction sector or can ask for adding few attachments in the existing excavator.

Ideally, many heavy equipment companies conduct surveys to understand the need of the operators. What they want to be added and how they want it to work. If there are any deficiencies in the existing model, how can they bring some improvement? They manage to take the survey from different companies across many states and then on the basis of the wants of the operators, they try to bring it new features. It is evident that the engineers have a tough time to get most of the features in but they still manage to do so. They eventually understand that in today’s time in order to exist in the industry they have to make as per the needs of the operators.

Know the intricacies of the construction business

The construction business is one of the most popular and profitable businesses in the current scenario. People choose the real estate business for investments and also everyone desires to have a property of his or her own. Hence, if you too are looking for a business that will fetch you great profits within a very short span, the construction business is the right one for you.

But, before you start the construction business, it is a must that you know about the intricacies of the construction business. With proper details, you will be able to establish your business fast and will also be able to enjoy the profits soon.

  • Get the finances:

 

The first thing that you need to start or establish a business is finance. Without finances, you will never be able to start any business. However, the construction business is one of those businesses that require huge amount of start-up capital.

For that you need to chalk out a business plan that will help you to fetch bank loans. The plan must clearly state how many employees you are going to have, your target market and how you plan to achieve the target. The initial cost and the potential profit that you will earn from it must be clearly mentioned in the plan. If you do not know how to right a good business plan, hire a skilled professional, who knows how to write business plans for a construction business.

  • Tools and heavy construction equipment:

 

One of the very important intricate factors associated with construction business is the expense of tools, heavy construction equipment and machineries. If you can afford, you can buy them. You will certainly get the brand new equipment as well as the old equipment. There are many dealers, who deal in the new and old construction equipment and will easily find one for you. You can also rent the equipment, tools and machineries for your projects initially, if you do not want to engage a lump sum amount of money in buying them.

  • Setup the business office:

 

The construction business demands a physical office, where all the employees, the clients and the customers can come in to deal. You must also keep in mind that along with the office building, you need a parking space for the construction equipment, machineries and tools.

  • Licensed and insured:

 

If you want to be fair and gain acknowledgement within a short span of time, having your business licensed and insured is a must. This will give the customers the assurance and guarantee that your company is there to stay. Certainly this will have an impact on the prices of your projects, increasing the profit margin.

  • Safety plans for the employees:

 

Since the construction business works onsite and there are numerous workers, who will be working on the many construction projects, their safety plans and occupational health plans is your responsibility. You must offer them to the employees, so that they are happy working with you and do not bring your business to a standstill under any circumstances.