Important Tips for Hiring Reputable and Reliable Subcontractors By Atlantic/Smith, Cropper & Deeley 8/10/2015 There are plenty of advantages with hiring subcontractors. Whether contractors hire them for renovations or new building projects, there are a few important things to know. The most important thing to think about is who the individual is and how he or she will represent the company name. When customers complain, they will likely name the company and not the individual subcontractor. In addition to this, the contractor is responsible for everything the subcontractor does. This is why it is so important to hire individuals who are capable, professional and responsible. Before Hiring Ask to see proof of insurance. Have the subcontractor provide a certificate of insurance. If a project will last more than one year, make note of the policy's expiration date. When that date arrives, ask to see the new certificate of insurance to ensure the subcontractor is keeping the policy active. Make sure the individual is insured for workman's compensation and liability. The subcontractor's staff should also be properly insured. Verify degree program completion. It is important to hire a subcontractor who has been properly trained. Ask to see a degree. The individual should also have a minimum of four years of experience working as a foreman. Ensure the individual is licensed. Each state has its own rules for licensing and verification, so be sure to use individual state procedures and check local laws. If the subcontractor has additional staff working on the project, they should also be insured. Ask for references. Ask for a minimum of three current references that can be contacted directly. It is also helpful to ask to see samples of the subcontractor's previous work. Make a written contract. This document should include what the contractor expects of the subcontractor and his or her staff. It should include a rate of pay, who will be responsible for mistakes and who is responsible for other various tasks. It is also important to make sure the subcontractor is willing to make repairs or changes after the job is finished. Tour the site together. When doing this, make sure the subcontractor knows what must be done. The subcontractor should also understand how to get the job done and who is in charge of various tasks. When the job starts, there should be no guesswork involved. Make communication a priority. The individual should be easy to contact and talk to. Communication should be good on both ends, so it is important that the subcontractor and contractor get along well. During A Project Keep communication lines with customers open. It is important that customers bring their concerns and questions directly to the contractor. Take necessary steps to make the customer feel that his or her input is highly valued. Messages can get lost in the network if they are passed along to the subcontractor and his or her crew, so make sure the customer has all current contact information. Make a file for subcontractors. Keep track of all conversations and transactions. This includes emails, notes, calls, face-to-face conversations, licenses, certificates and any receipts. After Project Completion Do a final inspection. Walk through the construction site to make sure the job has been completed in a satisfactory manner. Bring a checklist with items that can be marked off as they are verified. Make note of any repairs or changes that must be completed. Make sure the agreement has been upheld. It is important to make sure all the terms of the contract have been met. Subcontractors' actions and work should comply with every detail in the agreement. The project is officially over when the terms have been met and the contractor is satisfied. Thanks for reading. Do you have any tips that help you find reliable contractors?