Subcontractors sometimes find themselves in a precarious position in the construction supply chain. Subcontractors rely on communication with the contractor to be fully briefed on the detail of a project and their role within it.
Likewise, contractors are in the middle of the supply chain having to manage both the client and subcontractors.
Safe to say, there’s a lot of commercial administration and financial and legal concerns to navigate for subcontractors, particularly when involved in different projects simultaneously. There is little time for detailed admin.
This is the territory of the Quantity Surveyor (QS) who oversees the commercial and legal matters of construction projects. In the absence of a QS in a subcontractor business, SubPort provide QS construction project help on a freelance basis.
SubPort is a specialist commercial construction consultancy that was set up to provide subcontractors with QS and finance support.
Pre-contract services for construction companies
Pre-contract details and agreements are vitally important for the smooth running of a subcontractor’s work on a project. These fall under the remit of a QS, so SubPort provide pre-contract services for subcontractors. These services which SubPort manage for subcontractors include:
• PQQ (pre-qualification questionnaire) completion. The PPQ is used to ascertain the suitability of a supplier so it is essential that it’s completed by the subcontractor correctly. The subcontractor must answer a list of questions about their company which the lead contractor or client uses to decide if they’re suitable for a project.
• Estimating and producing a Bill of Quantities. The QS prepares a Bill of Quantities that provides project-specific, measured quantities of the items identified in the drawings and specifications of the tender document.
• Drawing take-offs. The QS manages the process of quantifying the material quantity required for a construction project.
• Post award contract reviews. The QS will conduct contract reviews to ensure that what the subcontractor is signing is fully understood and acceptable. This includes a risk assessment and a full review of the terms and conditions to decide if any negotiations are necessary or if any elements should be rejected.
Commercial contract management
As a freelance Quantity Surveyor, SubPort provide commercial contract management services.
Commercial contract management includes commercial administration such as preparations and submission of payment applications. It also covers change control.
Sometimes there are changes to the project scope of works which can be detrimental to a subcontractor if they are not fully evaluated. SubPort ensure that any changes are administered, calculated and applied for correctly.
SubPort also prepare and negotiate all final account settlements.
Contract resolution for subcontractors
There are occasions when subcontractors find themselves in contract disputes. This is costly in terms of time and profitability, so disputes need to be handled efficiently by a qualified Quantity Surveyor. SubPort can help to recover cash wrapped up in retentions which is a notoriously time consuming and protracted process. Often SubPort’s involvement alone can expedite a resolution.
SubPort can represent subcontractors in contract resolution cases at meetings and in communications to ensure that all risks and costs are mitigated.