Construction is an inherently challenging industry. A lack of protocols and proper protection could turn costly, which means a company might end up in a tough financial spot rather easily.
However, great tools do exist to help make the profession a simpler proposition. For instance, skipping out on commercial general liability insurance may be a bad idea - instead, construction firms and contractors should be proactive about the hidden risks surrounding their industry.
Stay vigilant to protect against risk
All professionals are faced with a tough decision - change the company in favor of short-term profits, or take the long road and bank on future gains. According to Constructor Magazine, there will always be that other guy who is willing to cut corners, take shortcuts and produce a cheaper product in order to make a quick buck. Those that take this route, however, run the risk of hurting their reputations and potential for long-term success. Instead, vital business protections like liability insurance can be smart investments for the future.
One serious risk that often flies under the radar is personal asset loss, the news source noted. Many construction professionals and other business owners consider these types of losses safe from a lawsuit. On the contrary, courts can use personal assets as a means to cover any costs that the business can't pay for. These could add up to include lawyers' fees, court fees and much more - even if the final verdict finds a business owner not liable.
Thankfully, there is a solution. Commercial liability insurance can cover both personal assets and professional ones, so financial protection for many different costs could be included. A monthly premium might be a relatively small cost in the event something does go wrong, and a construction professional finds himself or herself in court.
In addition, some people believe they're covered, when in fact their insurance is full of gaps. Constructor Magazine explained that it may be tempting for construction firms to cut costs if business has slowed. Comprehensive insurance shouldn't be included in this, since the troubling consequences could outweigh the short-term profits.
Be thorough regarding common risks
Besides more subdued risks for the construction industry, professionals are faced with a number of challenges on a daily basis. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, there are roughly 6.5 million people working per day at sites across the country. The fatal injury rate for this industry is higher than the national average.
Problems could arise from falls, structure collapses, shock, motion injuries or lack or proper protection, OSHA noted. Regardless of how an injury took place, workplace safety and employee health and wellness should always be a priority. Workers compensation insurance and a risk management plan can help ensure financial stability in the event something does go wrong.
Scaffolding is one of the most frequently cited for occupational safety, OSHA reported. Therefore, they must be structurally sound and sturdy enough to carry a significant load. Additionally, all construction companies should make sure that scaffolding is built on stable, level ground. Cutting corners here could have serious consequences. One way to ensure workplace safety is with regular inspections. Trained professionals should look over all scaffolding on a frequent basis, so any problems can be caught early.
Another risk that construction firms often face are falls. Many employees work at elevated heights on a daily basis, which means their chances of being involved in accidents increases. OSHA reported that falls typically account for the most fatalities within the industry. Whenever possible, aerial lifts should be used alongside guardrail systems and warning lines. Employees must be well-trained when it comes to safety protocols, and the more involved management is regarding risk control, the more secure the company will be.