Across Los Angeles County and throughout the State of California, construction contractors are busy preparing themselves for an exceptionally eventful spring and summer. After more than a year of limited work opportunities due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many anticipate thousands of homeowners, businesses, and other entities all clamoring to hire them all at once.
It sounds like a dream come true: simply having to answer the phone to get business. But for construction contractors, the rate of job opportunities matters as much as the volume. After all, they can only be in one place at one time. While getting hired for two dozen projects is a gold mine, the allure wears off fast if they all need to be finished within the same two-week window.
It wouldn’t be so bad if it weren’t for the pall of uncertainty that envelopes contractors as a rule. The concern about work drying up – reinforced by the events of the previous year – is enough for most contractors to instinctively accept every job offer that comes their way. Can you blame them? However, if biting off more than they can chew results in negative Networx reviews and bad Google ratings, doing so can be bad for business.
Just wait and see – that’s what contractors across the State of California are currently getting told by friends, family, journalists, and government officials. But it’s not that simple. Those working in construction are always worried about what’s around the corner. To be at the right place at the right time to secure a job opportunity tomorrow, they need to make decisive moves today.
Will the phone ring off the hook so much they don’t have to worry about outreach? Or, will a competing contractor find a way to secure the lion’s share of job opportunities, leaving little for others? What about the pace? Will the offers all come within a month, or will the natural flow of demand result in a trickle of jobs throughout the spring and summer?
One thing is for certain: the past 12 months have led to an unavoidable buildup in unfinished construction projects. As state and local restrictions are lifted and life slowly returns to normal, a year’s worth of pending projects will suddenly resume. When they do, contractors in LA will have their hands full for the foreseeable future.
It’s simply a question of how they plan to react and if the facts warrant a proactive approach. Furthermore, contractors have to gauge the financial implications of an unprecedented rate of jobs. It will be the definition of feast or famine, with months of downtime followed by months of chaos. When the dust settles, will the cash flow be managed in a way to account for the return to a famine that may follow?
It’s a lot to think about, and California’s vast network of construction contractors has a limited amount of time to figure it out. However, given the ingenuity and perseverance that comes with the job, it’s safe to say the majority will make it work.