CONSTRUCTION RESOURCES

CONSTRUCTION ARTICLES

 

ENGINEERING NEWS RECORD PUBLISHED ARTICLES

Recognizing Growth Risk – Originally published in ENR – April 1, 2019

How a Badly Needed Firehouse Proved the Dangers of Low Bid – Originally published in ENR – July 3, 2018

Surviving the Big Squeeze – Originally published in ENR – January 22, 2018

Because Risk is in Your DNA – Orginally published in ENR – November 27, 2017

Blame? Look in the Mirror – Orginally published in ENR – June 5, 2017

Go by Your Experience – Orginally published in ENR – November 28, 2016

Is Your Match Heaven-Made? – Orginally published in ENR – July 25, 2016

Overhead: The Silent Killer – Orginally published in ENR – September 15, 2015

A Formula for Survival – Orginally published in ENR – June 9, 2014

Pressure on Midsize Firms – Orginally published in ENR – May 5, 2014

The New Rules of Risk – Orginally published in ENR – September 9, 2013

More Room for Gloom – Orginally published in ENR – July 8, 2013

Beware the Recoery – Orginally published in ENR – February 4, 2013

Downsizing Can Lead to Success – Orginally published in ENR – April 26, 2010

Prospering in Cyclical Markets – Orginally published in ENR – March 11, 2009

Success Can Bring Deadly Distractions – Orginally published in ENR – January 4, 2008

Prepare for a Huge Die-Off – Orginally published in ENR – September, 2000

CONSTRUCTOR MAGAZINE PUBLISHED ARTICLES

Are You Risking Your Company by Growing Too Fast? – Originally published in Constructor – April 2000

Project Site Management – Originally published in Constructor – February 1998

Two Hats are Better Than One – Originally published in Constructor – September 1997

The R-Score Formula – Originally published in Constructor – February 1996

Measuring Financial Risk – Originally published in Constructor – February 1995

Downsizing – Originally published in Constructor – November 1993

The 5 Stages of Growth – Originally published in Constructor – November 1991

Responsibility Without Authority – Originally published in Constructor – January 1974

ADDITIONAL PUBLISHED ARTICLES

Mitigating the Hidden Risks – Originally published in NASBP – April 2017

Measuring Financial Risk in the Closely-Held Construction Company – Originally published in The CFO’s Toolbox – August 1996

Late Payments May be Your Own Fault – Originally published in The American Professional Constructor – February 1989

A Contractors Guide to Functional Analysis – Originally Published in Research for New Horizons Foundation – 2015

CONSTRUCTION TOOLS

CONSTRUCTION COMPANY SELF-ANALYSIS PROGRAM

Every organization can improve performance. Advancing a construction organization towards world-class performance requires accurate identification of the organization’s strengths and weaknesses. Decades of research lead to this do-it-yourself diagnostic tool that provides the equivalence of an independent expert evaluation of every aspect of your business. Research suggests that most managers understand construction methods better than the multi-layered business side of the business and the complicated interdependent relationships between marketing, production, and accounting. This tool will provide you with a comprehensive insight into the complex functional areas of your business. Once identified, most contractors have little difficulty correcting potential limitations or compensating for them. Identifying strengths and weaknesses is the bigger issue.

DOWNLOAD SPREADSHEET

PROJECT SELECTION PROGRAM

The project selection tool provides an accurate measurement of project selection risk based upon what is known or not known about a potential project at a given point in time, and how well the project matches the firm’s experience.

The project selection tool provides an accurate measurement of project selection risk based upon what is known or not known about a potential project at a given point in time, and how well the project matches the firm’s experience.

DOWNLOAD: PROJECT SELECTION PROGRAM SPREADSHEET

Late payment to contractors is an industry nightmare that violates contracts and multiplies the risk. Worst of all, contractors allow it to happen. Having been paid late for so long, contractors think it’s normal. Most feel they have no influence over the payment process. The reason is what I have called for many years an “entitlement” paradox.

DOWNLOAD: BLAME? LOOK IN THE MIRROR ARTICLE

DOWNLOAD: DON’T IGNORE YOUR CFO ARTICLE

Learn more about pursuing only profitable work.

DOWNLOAD: PURSUING ONLY PROFITABLE WORK ARTICLE

R-SCORE CALCULATOR

The R-Score measurement is the result of extensive research by Dr. Tom Schleifer. It is a single formula that determines whether a construction company’s financial condition is improving or deteriorating, and to what degree. Unlike any single ratio discussed here, this formula consists of a combination of interrelated financial and organizational performance indicators. Simply stated, this indicator measures the ability of a company to produce its work at a profit while effectively utilizing its financial resources (essentially keeping debt low in relation to equity). The R-Score—and, of course, the company’s actual risk—increases when the company’s ability to earn a profit is diminished, or when their financial structure becomes more highly leveraged.

DOWNLOAD: R-SCORE CALCULATOR SPREADSHEET

MANUAL OF CONSTRUCTION PRACTICES

Dr. Schleifer has worked in Construction for more than 50 years and has accumulated an astonishing amount of knowledge about the inner workings of the industry.  Over the past years, he has compiled all of his knowledge about the business side of the business of construction and created a Manual of Construction Practices.

DOWNLOAD: MANUAL OF CONSTRUCTION PRACTICES

GLOSSARY OF SURETYSHIP AND RELATED DISCIPLINES

Suretyship is a discipline demanding an interdisciplinary approach. Accounting, banking, law, insurance, reinsurance, government, and, in some instances, engineering, architecture, and construction all meet on common ground, a bond or contract of suretyship; and, each must be considered as important as the others.

We, Construction Management Associates, Inc., have searched for a glossary of suretyship, comprehensive, yet with simple, clear, readable definitions. We have not found such a glossary; therefore, we decided to write one. Construction Management Associates, a surety consultant with years of experience, was well-suited to meet the challenge.

We trust that we have produced a book of value, of utility. We are proud of and satisfied with the glossary; however, we will continue to update, expand and improve this work. Hindsight has a certain clarity; we hope that our foresight will as well.

DOWNLOAD: GLOSSARY OF SURETYSHIP AND RELATED DISCIPLINES

MANAGING THE PROFITABLE CONSTRUCTION BUSINESS: THE CONTRACTOR'S GUIDE TO SUCCESS AND SURVIVAL STRATEGIES

Take control of your construction contracting business and manage it through the natural highs and lows of the construction market.
Learn from a team of construction business veterans led by Thomas C. Schleifer, who is commonly referred to as a construction business “turnaround” expert due to the number of construction companies he has rescued from financial distress. His financial acumen, combined with his practical, hands-on experience, has made him a sought-after private consultant. His experience and no-nonsense philosophy have truly given him a unique perspective. 

Important topics covered include:

  • Understanding the primary areas of construction business failure in the next decade
  • Minimizing business risk with real-world examples
  • Developing a positive and competent management attitude and strategy

Discover how to maneuver through this complicated and risky industry by using the authors’ research and proven success strategies to sustain and grow your business.

PURCHASE: MANAGING THE PROFITABLE CONSTRUCTION BUSINESS

COMMON CONSTRUCTION ABBREVIATIONS AND SYMBOLS

The construction industry is full of acronyms, symbols, and abbreviations that vary between companies and workers.  If you ever find yourself wondering what MEP, CMU, FFE, or UNO mean, explore these websites.

Construction Abbreviations

Construction Symbols

here or here For the most common construction symbols, look here