5 Ways Leading Contractors Keep Their Clients Happy
How to Get Clients as a Contractor and Keep Them Happy
Simply getting the job done isn’t enough for today’s leading contractors. Not only must they meet the bottom-line objectives of on-time and on-budget projects, but contractors must engage clients beyond those aspects to ensure happiness and build solid relationships. Contractors know that creating a positive culture—combining real-time collaboration with excellent execution—that breeds happy clients
Here are five key strategies to help contractors get clients and build lasting relationships.
1. Consistently Provide On-Time, On-Budget Projects
Successful contractors are defined by their ability to meet project goals in terms of timelines and budgets. Providing a consistent level of value to clients through routinely hitting these baseline objectives should be a baseline goal. In construction, every project is different and presents its own set of challenges. However, by using leading-edge construction technologies that improve productivity, mitigate project risks, reduce errors and boost collaboration, contractors can streamline processes to make it easier to achieve on-time, on-budget projects.
A project team that works well in the field and communicates seamlessly with the back office and collaborates across the entire organization has the best opportunity for success. Today’s integrated, cloud-based construction management software platforms, mobile construction apps and business intelligence solutions are helping contractors work smarter and more efficiently. And by fostering a collaborative environment—complete with real-world, real-time insight and detailed analytics these technologies provide—clients feel more comfortable knowing their projects are in the hands of solid contractors.
Along with software, leading contractors embrace technologies that speed efficiencies, such as pre-fabrication, drones and robotics. A technology-driven company is better set up to meet the baseline need of meeting time and budget requirements.
2. Create a Truly Collaborative Environment
Breaking down departmental silos and achieving collaboration within the company should be a top goal for every contractor. But what about true project collaboration beyond the company walls? Modern contractors have the technology tools at their disposal to bring everyone involved in a project together to see relevant data in real-time, provide simple ways to update information for everyone at once and automate communication and workflows. Achieving that level of collaboration builds relationships and helps contractors get clients.
Cloud-based technologies, such as Viewpoint Team, provide just that—a cloud-based construction collaboration platform that brings your organization and your extended team of subcontractors, suppliers, architects and owners together in a single software solution. The real-time updating of every facet of a project not only provides more data to everyone involved in the project to keep it on time and on budget, but the transparency—and ability for people to communicate directly in the software—offers regular updates, progress reports and inclusion to allow a client to feel involved and confident.
3. Impress with Positivity
Contractors routinely invest in training employees on safety, skills and technology. But just as important is teaching employees to maintain a professional, responsive demeanor. Little touches like pleasant workers can make a huge impact with clients. Clients don’t want negativity when working with project managers or project team members. And they really don’t want to deal with folks who fail to respond to requests for information in a timely manner.
Contractors’ project teams need to excel in both areas, creating positive, timely interactions at every communication opportunity. Human attitudes and responsiveness can be taught, but if the technology and software being used makes it hard to get timely information, it can still lead to frustrations across project teams and clients alike. Moving to cloud-based software solutions can help, bringing real-time access to data to the table and, in many cases, allowing team members to easily self-serve their own information requests with just a few clicks. The cloud also makes it easier for a project manager to prepare quality reports for clients without having to spend an inordinate amount of time doing so.
4. Avoid Negative Incidents
No client wants a black eye when it comes to public perception. Accidents, fines or conflicts during the construction process of projects they own can lead to a negative image in the court of public opinion. Avoiding these risks is much easier when there are sound strategies in place to prevent such issues—or proactively respond should they occur.
Again, modern cloud-based construction software that includes construction-specific functionality for compliance and document management and safety management help supplement sound strategies by streamlining the processes around them. For instance, these solutions can provide real-time safety briefings, the ability to instantly disseminate important safety updates, easy ways to facilitate training, and on-demand reports to ensure the right safety practices are being carried out on jobsites at all times. Having this level of easily-accessible, relevant information available to project teams can be key to cutting down serious jobsite injuries, preventing conflicts among contractors and subcontractors and ensuring project teams remain in compliance with all legal, contractual and union rules and regulations.
5. Keep it Simple (and Visual)
How do contractors get clients? By providing what the clients need, and the average client doesn’t want—or need—mounds of information. Keep communications simple and visual with dashboards, graphs and key project updates. These easy-to-digest solutions help a client understand project progress without giving them excess information that leads to confusion or misunderstanding. A myth about dashboards and simplified reports is that they hide the real story of what’s really going on. However, with modern construction software, users can drill down into detailed data from dashboards and reports for deeper analysis.
Modern software is also providing increasingly powerful data analytic and business intelligence capabilities, allowing users to easily analyze large chunks of data in virtually any format they want to drive smarter business decisions. These analytical tools are being used to create even more informative reports for clients that are easy to understand.
Each of these five strategic approaches to client satisfaction show that technology is playing a larger role in success. Is it time for your company to invest in a technology transformation? If so, connect with Trimble Viewpoint today and we can help you get started!