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I hire subs to frame a house for a customer. They mouth off to the customer that they haven't been paid and "if all the materials were on the job when they started, they would have finished a week ago."
Truth: at no time has materials been an issue. Payment is due them on completion. Yet I have given them two draws. Ironically, the person who complained to the customer has not been on the job after getting his last draw 10 days ago. Also, they would have finished by now if they didn't take four day weekends and 6 hour work days.

How do I keep the subs from undermining my relationship with the customer. This is an elderly man who wants to be kept out of the daily issues, yet subjects himself to an earful from the subs.

I would prefer to take the high ground, ignore the B.S. and just get the job done. But the B.S. is causing me problems.

Any thoughts?
 

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For this job, just stick it out and finish. Then directly go and find different/better subs for the next jobs. And definitely add a clause to your contractor/sub-contractor agreement indicating that (5) work days a week are a must, with 8 hours on-site, except of course holidays. Be firm, tell them in no uncertain terms what you expect, and let them know if they cross the line, they are gone.

I also would add that I'd have a chat with the current customer, explain your side of the issues, and apologize porfusely for the subs behavior. And let your subs know that you are onto the their crap and won't tolerate it.

My 2¢
 

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irving said:
This is an elderly man who wants to be kept out of the daily issues, yet subjects himself to an earful from the subs.

Any thoughts?
If he wants to stay out of the daily issues why does he ask questions and show up when people are working?

If the subs complain about their materials, why don't they buy the materials instead of you? Very few GC's I know provide materials, and the ones that do I prefer not to work for because they are ultra cheapo's.

If scheduling is a problem there are some key words which I really hate to read when I am a sub and they are "Time is of the essence." Back charge them for your scheduling delays. You may want to define approximate completion dates in your contracts with your subs.

Also tell the subs that no direct communication is allowed in relation to the job specifics.

I've never called a customer's customer. That's just tacky.

I believ ein balance. If you write any penalties into your proposals you should also write in bonuses. If someone said to me "I will fine you if you are late." I'd really expect to hear the opposite "I will reward you if you are early."
 
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Grumpy

Grumpy said:
If he wants to stay out of the daily issues why does he ask questions and show up when people are working?

If the subs complain about their materials, why don't they buy the materials instead of you? Very few GC's I know provide materials, and the ones that do I prefer not to work for because they are ultra cheapo's.

If scheduling is a problem there are some key words which I really hate to read when I am a sub and they are "Time is of the essence." Back charge them for your scheduling delays. You may want to define approximate completion dates in your contracts with your subs.

Also tell the subs that no direct communication is allowed in relation to the job specifics.

I've never called a customer's customer. That's just tacky.

I believ ein balance. If you write any penalties into your proposals you should also write in bonuses. If someone said to me "I will fine you if you are late." I'd really expect to hear the opposite "I will reward you if you are early."
VERY WELL PUT ....thank you Grumpy

as always be safe ........Towerhound..
 

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Wow, great thread!

I am really enjoying everyone's input on this one. great points!
 

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I'm just a bit curious as to how a sub is related to the contractor as to materials.
My companies sub to others and we are responsible for all phases that we are contracted to do, materials are part of the contract.
Something is rotten in Denmark and I think that it is Irving.
Re-read the thread, he states that at "no time has materials been an issue".
They should never have been an issue to him. IF he had hired subcontractors, which he may have but on his terms.
I have over 30 of years dealing with Middle Easterners and this has all of the flavor of one. I'm going to leave it at that.
 

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Teetor the sub is claiming the materials are an issue and irving saying they are not. My point really more of a question. Let me rephrase.

Why are we even bothering to discuss materials? Doesn't your sub supply his own materials? Why are you buying your sub's materials?
 

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Thanks to Mike Finley for pointing out all the areas where I would go wrong in dealing with subs. I obviously don't use them for my business and if I ever chose to, I reckon I'd better get used to different ways of business.

And I thought Nathan was going to require people to register to post here. It is aggravating trying to debate points with someone known as 'unregistered'.
 

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Subs aren't the only ones blowing hot air all over the place. Hourly guys do that crap too.

I think it's a question of employee/GC loyalty.

You obviously hired morons Irving. Don't sweat it, sometimes it's tuff to tell, but now you know so let them go.

Bob
 
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