From the category archives: Business

Business

Bonding as an Empowerment Tool

It’s a fact: Small businesses are the backbone of the American economy. And surety bonding is the lifeblood of any successful contractor, regardless of size.  

Another fact: Construction is risky business. Contractors often face a myriad of challenges during the life cycle of a construction project. 

The Power of Partnership: Choosing the Best Surety Agent for the Job

  Thanks to several years of favorable industry-wide results, there is plenty of capacity in the surety marketplace. Carriers and agents are aggressively competing for contractors’ business. Most companies have probably received numerous solicitations from agents and brokers near and far, via the internet, promising larger programs, better terms and lower rates. 

In today’s soft market environment, practically any licensed insurance agent can help a firm obtain bonding. It is a buyer’s market right now and a great opportunity for contractors to establish their first bond line or reevaluate their current situation.

How to Handle Higher Project Volume Without Overextending the Business

  Higher project volume—whether it’s more projects of the same size or the same number of projects at an increased size—can place stress on any contractor. The starting point for handling that stress is the business plan, which should be prepared and continually updated. Accordingly, contractors that decide to increase project volume should only consider doing so after careful planning.

Keep in mind, the business plan for well-run organizations incorporates the five Ms: money, machine, material, manpower and methodology. 

Filling the Surety Industry's Generation Gap

Word of the construction industry’s labor shortage is being heard loud and clear: Two-thirds of U.S. contractors are having a hard time finding qualified workers and possess a virtually nonexistent backfill of young talent entering the industry. But what about the surety professionals working behind the scenes? Are they facing the same challenges?

Construction Companies Cannot Afford to Overlook Digital Marketing

  Whether a business is selling a construction-related product or a specialty construction service, it needs to reach its target audience online by embracing digital marketing. This includes any marketing efforts done online: blogging, social media, email marketing, search engine optimization (SEO), website development and more. It’s expected that digital will account for more than 75 percent of marketing budgets in the next five years. 

Aging Infrastructure Projects Call for Surety Bonding Protections

  At a time when local, state and federal government budgets are under mounting pressure, allocating the resources to refurbish America’s aging infrastructure—the roads, bridges, railways, airports, water systems, pipelines and other components upon which our economy depends—is an increasingly difficult challenge.

However, the deplorable state of much of the nation’s vital infrastructure, which earned a D+ grade from the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE), can no longer be ignored. It is becoming an increasing drag on business productivity, as well as negatively affecting the convenience and safety of individual Americans.

Market Overview: Creating Sustainable Growth With Surety Bonds

  Changes in the surety market have created opportunities for construction companies across the nation to achieve controlled and sustainable growth. 

A construction company must establish a strong network with legal and accounting professionals in order to be successful, but building a relationship with a surety bonding company places a contractor in a caliber of its own. Bonding capacity and prequalification transform businesses and help them prosper. 

Millennials Spend Less on Business Travel Than Older Employees

Average dining, hotel and entertainment expenses for employees between the ages of 36 and 65 totaled $8,596 over two years compared to $5,188 for employees between the ages of 22 and 35, according to a global report from Concur, a business travel management firm. The biggest difference was in the dining and entertainment category: $52 per transaction for employees over age 36 versus $33 per transaction for those under age 25. Meanwhile, millennials spent slightly more on hotels: $114 versus $111.

Four Common Paths to Transitioning Ownership

Throughout the next decade, numerous baby boomers who own construction businesses will retire and exit the marketplace. For many, a good portion of their personal wealth is tied up in the business. To maximize financial gain upon retirement, owners will benefit from a well-planned transition strategy.

How Technology-enabled Collaboration Will Streamline Engineering Economics

  Fueled by the adoption of the cloud and new advancements in information management, machine learning and big data, fabricators and manufacturers will become more agile, gaining more control and predictability of their supply chain.
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