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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This applies to commercial construction, a retail storefront I am working at.
I was under the impression that the duty or job of a jobsite super was to coordinate, manage, over-see, and schedule all subs/trades working at that job site. Even ones that were hired outside of his firm, like hired by the owner directly, or another source. Wouldn't it be (his job) to know when they (subs) are to show up, fit in to the schedule, how long their portion of the job will take, what other trades would logically come before or after, etc.
Am I close to being right, or way off on my assumptions?
 

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I don't know about commercial, but in my residential remodeling career your ASSumpstions seem to be correct.

Even when the owner brings in his own subs, (which I strongly discourage) I still have to coordinate with them on scheduling. When scheduling the job, I give a copy of the schedule and a gantt chart to the owner and have him decide whether he wants to talk to them directly or if he wants me to do it. I always warn the owner that my part of the schedule will occur exactly according to schedule, and if his subs don't show up, etc. it will throw off the entire schedule.

For the most part, when the owner relays the information to the subs, and they see my level of organization they have been good about follow through.

ProWallGuy-what's going on at your job?
 

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In addition to that he needs to keep his eye on the budget, approve invoices and timecards. Negotiate the best price for all material he orders. Keep the subs from gouging on change orders.

For the most part he has to look after everything. generally he is the first there in the morning and last to leave in the evening. Treat the job like he was spending his own money.

At least thats what I did when I was a stupid-intendant. And it was all expected of me. But times they are a changing...
 

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My wife worked for Ellis Don, a large commercial/industrial builder. One day she brings me home the "Guidelines for Site Super" It was paper back, about 3/4" thick.

The legal responsibilities of a Site Super are very serious indeed. In some circumstances you can go to jail for failure of your duties, be sued personaly, etc. etc. Scared the crap out of me.

So glad I'm not in that game. I was for a time the safety rep on a new home site, and I overroad everyone, including the owner of the company.

As far as your querry goes, I say you are right on the money, just watch your back, and be very clear about your responsibilities and liabilities. And I would get them in writing.
 

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You guys are so lucky I am such a pack rat. I found the "book". It is called- Project Management for construction superintendents.

Written by Francis D. Begley, B.Sc. and published by Saunders or Toronto Ltd.

For anyone in the Site Super position, this book is worth it's weight in gold. It covers every posible aspect of professional, commercial construction.

Oh, and Ellis Don built the CN Tower, so this book is good enough for me.
 

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The super should know whats going on with all the trades, prime contractors or his own subs. But he does not have all that much control over the prime contractors. But to answer your question he should have them written into the schedule and know their scope and duration of work.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Thank you for all the replies. Looks like my assumptions were close enough.
Being a "specialty contractor", I have traveled to numerous job sites, and dealt with more than a handful of supers/GCs, and all up until now have been very helpful and courteous. I had always assumed if they make my part of the job go smooth (along with the rest of the trades) the project is completed with minimal issues or hassles.

ProWallGuy-what's going on at your job?
My recent job has been nothing short of a debacle, fiasco, nightmare, and clusterphuck. You pick the best one.

I will attempt to explain, but will be vague on names/places as my user name is pretty well known and i don't want to rustle feathers until this is all behind me.

I do a type of niche specialty install of graphics. I am always hired by the owner or printer, never by the GC. I coordinate with the super as to when I should arrive, how long it will take, etc etc. In my contract with my client, I spell out what I will do, and what I need done for me.

In this instance, my job was an install in the City of Brotherly Love. I attempted to call the super numerous times, leaving messages, with no call back. I have been doing this particular store chain for awhile now, and the other supers had warned me that this one was a particular idiot. The storefront was scheduled to be open on Oct. 15. Look at the date today.

The printer (project manager) called me 2 weeks ago, and said they will be ready next week. I chose a date, and told him to check with the super to see if the wall would be ready, scaffolding available, etc. He calls me back and said everything was set for last Thursday. I fly out on Wednesday night, and show up on jobsite Thursday morning. No scaffold. I ask the super what happened to the scaffold? He laughs and says it ain't his problem, turns and walks away.

After much BS, the printer finds a local scaffold company, and hires them to come erect it. This will happen on Monday (today). So I fly home last Friday.

The printer forwards an email confirmation from the scaffold company to myself, and the super confirming the scaffold erection on Monday, followed by the immediate install of the graphics.

I fly out again on Sunday night, show up on job site Monday morning. No scaffold. I call the scaffold company, they say they were turned away by the super. I look up at the wall in question, and he has the glass installers putting in the glass railings the go on the stairwell which we need scaffold on to install the graphics. I ask him WTF? He says I don't have time to dick with you, you are not my problem.

So, when and how am I expected to install this graphic? Is this an ass or what?

So, all you supers out there. If you were in charge of this job, would you

A. Alert someone that you needed to pull down your scaffold for whatever reason so the graphic installer could arrange for his own?

OR

B. Just tear it down, and tell nobody, and let the sub work it out when he arrived on the site? And then screw him over again with another sub that will inevitably thoroughly delay the graphics install until God knows when or how?

BTW, this graphic is 35' tall, 40' wide, and a huge focal point spanning 2 floors.
 

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OMG-What a clusterf***.
The super is just a complete jag o** IMO

You should be on the phone with whomever you have an agreement/contract with. Someone needs to be held accountable for your extra plane fare.

You must have the patience of a saint. I would probably be in jail if I walked into what you did.

If your contract is with the owner, call him immediately and tell him what is happening to you.
 

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You guys are so lucky I am such a pack rat. I found the "book". It is called- Project Management for construction superintendents.

Written by Francis D. Begley, B.Sc. and published by Saunders or Toronto Ltd.

For anyone in the Site Super position, this book is worth it's weight in gold. It covers every posible aspect of professional, commercial construction.

Oh, and Ellis Don built the CN Tower, so this book is good enough for me.
Of course the OP knows he's right on target. But YOUR post made me smile.

I'm looking at MY supervisory "Bible" from years gone by. I still had it on my library shelves.

Written in 1959, by Lester Bittel... What Every Supervisor Should Know... is a treasure to me. And the words contained therein are as relevant today as they were 50 years ago.
 
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