The process of engaging contractors comes with its fair share of administrative overhead. As required by Australian WHS legislation, contractor documentation (qualifications, insurances, WHS systems) needs to be verified for compliance, then tracked and shared between departments involved in the engagement process. It can quickly become a complex operation, even when only dealing with a few contractors. When it comes to managing worker safety and the associated liability risk to the organisation, there is no room for error.
As your organisation and its projects grow in size, the number of contractors you need to augment your workforce will also grow proportionately. So as the number of contractors increases, so does the administrative burden. Handling everything manually may be viable when your contractor numbers are small, but when you have tens or even hundreds, it’s easy for things to get out of hand, increasing the likelihood of something ‘slipping through the cracks’. Incorrectly verified documents or lapsed certifications can place your projects at risk, costing your company time, money, and increasing your risk of liability.
Read on to learn about the common pitfalls of scaling up your contractor numbers, and the solutions a software-based contractor management system can offer.
The Problem of Scale
Ensuring that every contractor you engage is compliant with your organisation’s requirements can be a difficult and complex task. This issue is further exaggerated as your contractor numbers increase, projects become more complex and the worksite locations start varying. It can easily reach a point where you’re spending more time and resources managing the compliance of your contractors than you are utilising their skills for the project at hand.
Scaling Your Contractors Easily
Online software-based contractor management systems make scaling your contractor numbers simple. Once the system has been implemented and your staff trained in its use, it doesn’t matter how many contractors you are engaing or how quickly you are growing; software-based solutions scale seamlessly to fit operations of all sizes. Here are some of the main advantages of implementing a software-based contractor management solution.
1. Less Paperwork
Safety systems, licenses, certifications, insurance certificates; even a single contractor will come with significant amounts of documentation that will need to be checked verified and stored in a central location. Multiply that by alarge number of contractors and it becomes a question not of ‘if’, but ‘when’ something will be lost or misplaced.
A software-based management platform allows you to have all required documentation (for every contractor you engage), at your fingertips. Documents can be accessed, transmitted, and updated instantly, from any computer or mobile device.
Cutting down on the amount of paperwork and printing required will also go contribute towards any environmental goals that your company may have.
2. Quick and Easy Overviews
By simply logging in via a web portal, you can easily see which of your contractors are compliant (hence ready to start work), and which ones aren’t. You will no longer need to sort through paperwork, or setup manual calendar reminders for documentation expiring. Simply pull out your mobile device, access the app and view a snapshot of your contractor status; or have the system automatically notify you (and more importantly your contractors) before anything expires.
3. Regular Communication
Good communication between the workforce is an essential part of any business. Regular communication can help to increase morale, boost productivity, and flag safety risks before they become an issue.
Due to the transient nature of contractors and the possibility they may not be directly engaged by you, it can be easy for communication to fall through the cracks. Contractor management systems can help you to maintain regular communication and collaboration with your contractors, which will in turn help to boost productivity, compliance, and prevent WHS issues from developing.
4. Unified Training and Procedures
Contractors maintaining the required qualifications and insurances is only part of the equation. To have a truly safe and efficient workforce, it’s important that everybody is following the relevant safety procedures and practices. Generally, this isn’t an issue with long-term permanent employees, who will remain updated through the company’s internal training programs. However, when dealing with contractors who may only be engaged for a short amount of time, it can be difficult to keep track of who has received what training and induction information.
Contractor management systems can help you to track who has received what training, and when, ensuring everybody is kept clear on your company-specific procedures, practices, and protocols.
Implementing the correct contractor management solution can make dealing with hundreds of contractors as simple as a single one. Transitioning to a new system, especially when moving from paper to digital, can seem like a daunting task. In actuality, migrating to a platform such as Conserve is much simpler than you think, as the ‘heavy lifting’ is carried out for you. As your business and contractor requirements grow, your contractor management operations will be ready to scale with you.
Contact Conserve for more information on how we can help you scale your contractor management system.