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Working With General Contractors

27 July, 2020

Just like things have changed for paint contractors since the onset of COVID-19, general contractors have had to deal with new safety protocols as well as field concerns and cancellations from clients – often while working with multiple trades and subcontractors at the same time.

Chirene Hughes, writing for the Farmer Brown Insurance Agency, recommends that paint contractors keep in closer touch with their GC than usual, If the GC will be making changes in schedule – which may result in delayed timing and even delayed payments – you’ll want to be aware ahead of time so there are no surprises. If there’s one thing we’ve grown used to, its quick change, so stay in touch!

The Same But More

Michael A. Bordes, certified general contractor and president of A.A. Jedson Company LLC in Rye Brook, New York, pointed out some changes his company has made as a result of COVID – some of which may already be familiar to you. While he has to space his workers father apart, what he won’t make room for is subcontractors who don’t want to abide by his company’s protocol. He anticipates hiring more painters, but only those who understand and manage the COVID rule expectations clearly. “We must display a lot of patience during these times without excuse,” he said.

Whether your crew agrees with the rules or not, all of you want to get paid at the end of the project, so make sure everyone understands what to do before they pull up to the job site. Bordes has a long list of changes. “You can expect to deal with the new COVID rules and regulations which means adding eye wash stations, cleansing stations, wash sinks, changing masks three times a day, wearing gloves and changing three times a day, waiting longer times for elevators due to only allowing two people at a time, and signing into daily safety logs for the bathroom,” says Bordes.

But wait… there’s more! “Job sites will need to have each employee with their own tools, no sharing,” Bordes continued. “There will be additional costs for safety measures and additional time allowances for work due to having only one worker per 250 square feet per job.” On top of that, he says, there will be additional time needed for bathroom cleaning after use … so don’t mess it up!

Bordes suggests assuring your GC that you’re on board. “Present a valid and comprehensive plan to any GC,” he recommended. “This will show them that the painter is valid and understands the rules clearly.”

Hard to Hold

Jordan Scott, writing for the USGlass News Network, reports that nationwide, 67% of all construction firms have had a project canceled or delayed due to the pandemic. They also, statistically, reported more difficulty than trade contractors in getting products and building materials for their projects. Other GC concerns Scott mentioned included more legal and/or financial liability, shortened hours of business operations, and reduced financing.

Understanding the issues your GC is dealing with can go a long way towards keeping the work flowing your way.

Takeaway tips:

  • Keep in close touch with your GC to stay on top of changes in the project.
  • Remember, they are going through many of the same issues you are.
  • Let your GC know you have a plan for your own safety protocol and that you are on board with their new rules.

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