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Small & Emerging Contractors


Construction Executive

Employer Liability for Cell Phone UseOpen in a New Window

Cell phone usage is a distraction while driving, but so are a lot of other things. So why are employers worried? In the past few years, cell phone usage has been an issue in several lawsuits, and employers are being held responsible if a worker causes an accident while talking on the phone. 


Spray Polyurethane Foam: The Swiss Army Knife of Building Code ComplianceOpen in a New Window

With its ability to increase energy efficiency, meet or beat sustainability goals, and form a highly effective heat, air, and moisture control layer, SPF is a proven asset to any contractor’s code compliance efforts. By matching the needs of the structure with the performance of SPF, almost any new or existing commercial building can benefit from SPF.


Six Payment Challenges Up and Down the Contracting ChainOpen in a New Window

Careful negotiation of construction contracts will reveal payment challenges facing each party in the construction chain. 


How to Conduct a Successful ‘Safety Week’Open in a New Window

May 3-9 marked the second annual U.S. Safety Week, an event spearheaded by more than 40 U.S. and global construction firms comprising the Construction Industry Safety Initiative and the Incident and Injury-Free Forum to inspire everyone to be safety leaders. Their mission is to increase awareness of the importance of being committed to safety every day, inspire industry members to share best practices, conduct onsite safety awareness activities and recognize workers’ efforts to be injury-free.


An Owner’s Breakdown of a Safety Stand-DownOpen in a New Window

One of Air Products’ corporate KPIs involves doing a quarterly safety stand-down. The idea is to bring members of the ownership team—people involved in procurement, manpower planning, etc.—together with the contractor’s senior leadership, superintendents, project managers and safety officers to forestall incidents that tend to occur on construction projects. 


Practical and Legal Considerations of 3-D Printing TechnologyOpen in a New Window

The idea that buildings can be “printed” with relatively minimal labor is intoxicating and has attracted the attention of many engineering and construction leaders. But with any new technological advancement, there are practical and legal issues to consider.


Executive InsightsOpen in a New Window

The primary benefit of giving workers access to job cost information in the field, whether collecting data or consuming reports, is to promote better decision-making. The closer that data collection—of time, equipment, production units and more—occurs to the actual event, the more accurate it is. 


Take an Auditor’s-Eye View of Your Construction BusinessOpen in a New Window

Just as auditors are well served by brushing up before they begin a job, construction owners, contractors and any in-house accounting or bookkeeping personnel would do well to study the IRS’s Construction ATG. The introductory chapters that tell how the construction sector is structured and how contractors and subcontractors interact may seem elementary, but the subsequent content should be required reading to stay in line with the tax laws and understand issues that could cause problems.


Personalizing SafetyOpen in a New Window

For the most successful construction businesses, safety is part philosophy, part practicality. Read on for examples of how three companies—a family-owned general contractor in the South, an electrical and instrumentation specialist in the Midwest and a small design-builder in the Mid-Atlantic—have developed strong safety cultures that encourage buy-in from both employees and subcontractors.


Don’t Neglect Buy-Sell Agreements Funded by Life InsuranceOpen in a New Window

Contractors commonly use life insurance as a funding mechanism for buy-sell planning and insuring key employees. Because death is a common trigger in a buy-sell agreement, life insurance, when used as the funding mechanism for the agreement, provides the immediate liquidity to fund the buyout when the need arises. 

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