commercial construction

commercial remodel

Commercial Remodeling: Tips for Successful Improvements

Commercial Remodeling: Tips for Successful Improvements 1920 862 Derek Bullard

So you’re looking to dive into the vast undertaking of commercial renovation. It’s a smart choice: done well, a commercial remodel can impress clients, boost foot traffic, motivate employees and embolden investors. That’s the thing, though, isn’t it? You’ve got to make sure it goes well if you want to reap the rewards. So before you get started with your big commercial remodel, make sure you’re clued-up with the following tips. Think of this as your own personal commercial building renovation checklist!

Create a Budget and Time Frame (And Expect to Exceed Both)

Commercial remodeling services don’t come cheap. There are a lot of jobs that will cost you a lot of money, from your initial design to the acquisition of materials, baseline structural repairs to the commercial renovation itself. It’s worth researching quite how much you’ll expect to pay and setting aside an appropriate sum, with an extra 10% or so in case of unexpected costs or alterations you may desire.

As well as budgeting your finances, you’ll also want to budget out your time; that is, lay out an expected time frame for your commercial renovation. When considering this, remember that your employees and customers will likely have to continue operating throughout the proceedings. This can lengthen the time-to-completion, and if you don’t account for it, can lead to higher costs too.

Have a Central Reason for Your Renovation

One of the great things about a commercial remodel is that they can benefit a company, its employees, and its customers in a variety of ways. Still, before contacting any commercial remodel companies and getting started, it’s important that you work out a core reason for your renovation. Are you looking to modernize? Increase the services you offer? Perhaps you seek a more collaborative environment for your employees? There can be secondary reasons and benefits to your commercial renovation, sure, but without working out that core guiding factor, you’ll risk suffering from a lack of direction. With the myriad steps involved in even the simplest remodel, that sense of direction is key to keeping you within budget and on schedule.

Keep Within the Law

Any sort of major construction work, especially on premises that will be used by the public, must conform to local building regulations, safety regulations and accessibility requirements. Without meeting these requirements, it’s likely that you’ll face a number of complications with regulatory organizations down the road. It’s also important to attain all the relevant permits from your local authorities before getting started.

Ask For Your Employees’ Input

There are a mountain of decisions to make when taking on a commercial remodel, and while too much external advice can be overwhelming, it’d serve you well to keep track of what your employees are thinking from time to time. They are, after all, the ones who will be spending the most time in your building; the remodel should suit them more than anyone else. If you’re stuck on a tough design decision, remember who’s going to be working around it for the foreseeable future and ask for their thoughts.

Commercial remodels can work wonders in reinvigorating your employees and re-engaging customers. If you plan wisely, choose the right contractors, and stay within the laws of your locality, you’re on track for rewarding project outcome.

Pink Hard Hat

Pink Hard Hats in the Construction Industry

Pink Hard Hats in the Construction Industry 860 360 sashadmin

By Maria Teresa Maristela

An introspective of the past examines how women through time broke societal barriers to make their presence felt. Once imposed on them in antiquity by a traditional society, women now choose and define their roles beyond gender demarcation of what they can or cannot achieve. Breaking from the chains of conventional mold, women today are now moving forward and gaining strong visibility in the male-directed construction industry. Although they still assume a minor percentage of the workforce, female presence reverberates with equal display of competence, efficiency and skill as their male counterparts, whether it is in the trenches, field operations, construction management, leadership roles and diversified disciplines of engineering and architecture.

A historical chronicle of women in the building trade goes as far back as the 13th century in Europe. Women were given menial and unskilled tasks having been ascertained to be ineffective in hard physical labor. There were no profound highlights in their roles except as ditch digger, water fetcher or mortar mixer. Over the years, a progressive transition of views has witnessed emergence of female workers and companies promoting them to key positions in the industry. In the United States in the early 1900s, change was forthcoming as women were gradually given opportunities to embrace larger responsibilities in the construction industry. For instance, Julia Morgan, a diminutive female architect and civil engineer (two of the rare professions for women in those days), was selected from among possible male contenders to design and build the Hearst Castle in San Simeon, California from 1919 to 1947. Fast forward to 21st century, the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics released its latest record accounting for 10.3% of women in the construction workforce from 9.2% in 2015. It may be observed as a narrow increase at turtle pace, nevertheless there is diligence in growth proving that companies are gradually casting more gender-neutral roles in the industry.

Social perception of women working in the building trade that was once telling of gender stereotypes, residing from the commonplace thinking that women are lacking in ability and training to meet with physical demands required of the job, is slowly eroding and has improved exponentially. There is a discernible progress in the acceptance of women, availability of resources and male-recognition of women’s meticulous, detail-driven and innovative approach in assuming their roles, paving revolutionary roads for women in the industry to be elevated to executive capacity. A relative few even have become significant business owners in the building trade.

Cecille Maristela, an immigrant from the Philippines and owner of Substrata, started in construction by developing 24 for-sale condominium units providing her access to learn the ropes of the business. An accountant by profession but armed to the teeth with her hands-on proficiency in construction fieldwork, Cecille took reins to build her own construction company. Gaining recognition for the quality of her work, influx of projects (some of more complex nature such as building structures from ground up) mostly come from repeat clients, clients arising from the proverbial word-of-mouth and confident referrals by peers in the same trade. A crystal exemplar of making it in a once-traditionally male-dictated profession, Cecille like every woman in the construction industry had to overcome gender-biased hurdles to get to solid footing on which she stands.

Women have shattered obstacles of traditional thinking in the significance of their roles and changed the framework of the construction industry. It is ambitious and premature to say that they have broken the glass ceiling because the road to global inclusivity is still evolving. However, there is a promising forecast that more pink hard hats will emerge and navigate construction sites in the years to come.

Sources:

Hatipkarasulu, Yilmaz and Roff, Shelley. “Women in Construction: An Early Historical Perspective”. Associated Schools of Construction. 2011. https://www.ascpro0.ascweb.org

Historic People. “Julia Morgan (1872-1957)”. https://www.hearstcastle.org. 8 July 2020.