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Hiring The Best Industrial Coatings Contractor

How to Hire The Best Industrial Coatings Contractor For Your Job And How To Spot the Contractors To Avoid

Hiring the best industrial coatings contractor should be as easy as a basic google search, right? Wrong. There is something of a checklist you should have when choosing the right industrial coatings contractor for your project. While searching for a good qualified industrial coatings contractor, four main things should be considered carefully: safety, quality, schedule, and best value.

  • Safety should always be pro-active, practiced, and ongoing training as a company culture.  Check to make sure all certificates are current with adequate coverage for your project. 
  • Quality has industry standards using metrics from which to measure.  Type of preparation & products play and significant role in the end quality product.  In addition, utilizing a mock-up (a sample area to base the quality standard expected) allows the contractor an understanding of owner expectation and the owner an example of what was promised.   
  • Schedule/Time is key.  It determines labor needed, mobilization costs, accessibility to work area, limited work shifts or holiday work. and several other factors.   
  • Best Value/Cost is driven by Quality and Schedule. The more complicated, high risk or specific the job, the more expert knowledge is needed.  “Blow & Go” (spray with a simple product, low risk, high production) cookie-cutter-type projects are merely cost driven.   

How to make decisions to select the right contractor depends on your needs and the project.  Here are a few basic tips from a contractor with more than 35 years of experience. 

How to Do Your Homework First 

1.     References

Getting in a hurry to get a job done and not checking the references of the potential contractor is a dangerous practice. But not only should you have references for the contractor, but you should have basic background checks for their work force who will be working on site of your job. Contractors should run employee background checks as a part of expected quality and performance on the job.  Contractors should present a project portfolio with past performance, capacity, and capability.  Also use the power of social media beginning with their website. 

2.     Get a certification of insurance

If something goes wrong on a job, is the contractor insured to cover any potential property or personal injuries? Does the contractor have a good safety record? Certifications and safety protocol are on the top of the list for good contractors.  

3.     Manpower

Does the contractor have the resources to perform the work, such as a sufficiently skilled labor force to meet the required schedule while maintaining quality? A contractor needs to have a big enough on-site workforce as well as sufficient office and management personnel. I know this may sound basic, but if the contractor does not have a solid infrastructure of employees, response time will be slow and unreliable which could spell disaster for any project.  

DECO Coatings Inc are the lead industrial coatings experts in the coatings industry, with a climate-controlled facility that can operate 24/7 and accelerate project schedules without sacrificing quality.

 Signs of A Good Contractor

Look for major jobs they have completed that can be verified. The contractor may tell you that they have done this job or the other, but you should ask for a visual portfolio of past work, and you should check their references. How do you check their references? The best way is to check their LinkedIn. If the contractor is a reputable contractor that handles industrial jobs, then they should have a good LinkedIn presence and take their community and industry connections seriously.

A qualified specialty coatings contractor will also have certifications with SSPC (with QP3 standards) and NACE, as well as affiliations in the construction community. For example, at DECO we have affiliations with NACE (The Worldwide Corrosion Authority); SSPC (Society of Protective Coatings); ISA (Indiana Subcontractors Association); ICR (Indiana Construction Roundtable); Indiana Chamber of Commerce just to name a few. So depending on where you are located, it is important that the contractor is immersed into the construction community. They should have specialists in fields such as blasting, zinc, epoxys, fluorpolymers, and acrylics, and thermals. Not that they need to have specialists in every aspect of coatings, but whomever you hire should have enough areas of specializations that they can handle your entire coatings job. The thing is, if they don’t have the knowledge in expertise in a large range of coatings, you may not be getting the right kind of coatings or options for what you need.  

Good industrial coatings contractors offer services for more than just one type of customer. For example, at DECO Coatings, we cater to Engineers and Architects, Fabricators and Manufacturers, Contractors, and Owners. We work with Engineers and Architects to collaborate with coating specifications. We work with Fabricators and Manufacturers to apply coatings. Whomever you hire as your industrial coatings contractor, make sure that they have the capabilities in more that area of clients. 

Signs of A Bad Contractor

Slow response time and “safety-fails” are some of the biggest things to look for when trying to spot a bad contractor. When there is a problem on the job site in the middle of the day, you need to be able to get through to the person managing your job; if there is a safety issue or something that requires immediate attention it is vital to have a contract who is ready and able to problem solve understanding time is of the essence response.   

Good contractors are flexible and can work with your individual project needs. They can think outside the box and find creative ways to make things work. Planned pro-active strategies with communication to necessary parties keep project schedules on time.  It’s okay to ask a contractor during a bid how he/she would choose to approach the project and why. Open up a dialogue and have a conversation with them about it.  

Good contractors participate in industry shows and conventions to keep up with the newest technology and design trends. They improve best practices and participate in standard practice improvements because they love their industry and being an expert in their field. If a contractor is not attending (or sending management to) industry events, beware! 

Finding the Best Industrial Coatings Contractor The Right Way 

It’s not easy to find a good partner for a project, and it’s not easy to find the best industrial coatings contractor. When comparing apples to apples, there should be a detailed scope of work for the job.  The right industrial coating contractor will easily rise to the top.  Once you find just the right contractor to bring onto the project life gets a little easier. Due your duty of due diligence and make sure your contractor is up-to-par and able to provide the quality and creativity you need; each job is unique, and every surface deserves individualized attention.  

If you have questions about your specialty coatings job and need insight, please reach out to me via email or social media. We are the “Coatings Nerds” and are always happy to offer our insight any specialized coatings job.