Before beginning any type of construction contract or project, contractors need important information from their potential clients. By gathering this information upfront, they can ensure their clients a good experience with as little stress as possible. Contractors can also use this information to provide optimal experiences and improve client satisfaction.
1. What are your goals for the project?
Ask your potential client about their goals for the project. This will help you find out why the project is happening, as well as learn what is most important to your client. If they have multiple goals, have the client prioritize their goals in case there is a conflict.
For example, the client selects a sink that will take 12 weeks to arrive, but they mentioned that the project needed to be finished by a certain date because they have relatives coming to visit. By discussing goals ahead of time you’ll know that you need to find an alternative sink that will meet the schedule.
2. What is your budget?
No one likes to talk about money, but it is vital to understand your client’s cost expectations about the project. Have they done any research on potential costs? It’s important that clients have a realistic view of budget requirements. You can also use this time to talk about your value as a contractor, also known as your unique selling point.
Be sure to confirm that the prospective client has financing in place or enough funding available to afford the project. Lack of funding has derailed many projects and left contractors holding the bag.
3. How often do you want to communicate?
Clients have differing needs for communication. Some like to have daily updates, others weekly, and others only want to be bothered when necessary. It is often best to over-communicate, but finding out your client’s expectations ahead of time will help you get through the project smoothly.
Also, ask what form of communication works best for your prospective client, then use it to send updates. Learning more construction marketing ideas can help expand your communication channels.
4. What are your biggest concerns about the project?
This important question will highlight any major roadblocks the customer foresees during the project. It also helps refine the goals that were mentioned in question number one. Use this information to help you best serve your customer by addressing their concerns directly. Explain to them how you can be the best contractor for them by meeting their needs.
5. Have you worked with a contractor before?
As a contractor, you are used to the stress and strain that comes from working on a construction project. For many businesses and homeowners, this may be their first project. If so, finding out ahead of time can help you help them through the process.
6. Who can make project decisions?
If there are multiple parties or family members involved in a project, you want to make sure you know who has the right to make decisions. You need to know whose approval you need for changes to the scope and budget.
7. What is the anticipated schedule?
You want to get information from your client about the anticipated start and finish dates of the project. Address any concerns they may have about the schedule and find out how they want to handle potential delays. With the current labor and material shortages, it’s important to have open communication about schedules and delays from the beginning.
By asking these questions before the project starts, you can better serve your client and ensure customer satisfaction as well as project success. If you are a general contractor looking for qualified subcontractors to bid on your projects, PlanHub has the tools you need. On construction bidding websites, all you do is post your projects and select the trades you need. General contractors can register for a free account and get started with general contractor software for free today.