Your Business

 

 

Articles in this section are intended to help electrical contractors grow and improve their businesses, from financial and legal advice to creating a service and maintenance department. You’ll find articles on estimating projects and more below. 




A recent World Wildlife Fund survey found that almost half of Fortune 500 companies have at least one climate or clean-energy goal. It’s good business to be eco-friendly, and the construction industry has made great strides in going green without sacrificing profits.

When a 4.6-acre luxury residential construction project was being built on the site of a former hospital, it was quite an undertaking. It included building 373 apartments, food retailers and parking, and the workers had to be sure not to leave out its avant-garde appeal.


According to the latest monthly report by the U.S. Census Bureau, construction spending in the United States fell 1.3 percent in June to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of more than $1.2 trillion.

As president of the National Electrical Contractors Association since 2015, I have devoted much of this column to the mounting list of challenges the electrical construction industry faces. But it’s also important to recognize positive things that are happening.

More on Your Business

 
Corporate Money Flowing Into Energy Storage


Anyone can make a difference by installing solar panels, buying an electric car or changing out those old power-guzzling incandescent lamps. However, the so-called tipping point often rests on the shoulders of corporate America.


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Editors' Pick
Balance of Power: Women in Electrical Contracting

With a mix of job smarts, business savvy, grit and grace, an increasing number of women-owned contracting firms are helping to level the playing field in a traditionally male-dominated industry.


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Laboring Over Change Orders

Change orders—we love them, and we hate them. Preparing a change order used to be enjoyable. The drawings were clear, the changes were clouded and we were allowed to make a profit. All we submitted was a lump-sum proposal, which was rarely questioned and never outright rejected.


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Editors' Pick
Power Floats: DBE Electric and Amaya Electric

The world’s longest and widest floating bridge spans a portion of Highway 520 in Washington state, one of the busiest corridors in the Puget Sound region. The bridge stretches 1.4 miles across Lake Washington and measures 116 feet wide at its midpoint.


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Do Women Make Better Service Managers?

Rachel Hienz would have never expected the situation that was about to unfold as she entered a bank branch one morning. She was there for a pre-job walk-through with other representatives of companies that would soon begin renovations on the building.



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Milwaukee 18V lithium-ion deep-cut band saw
Cool Tools: Saws 2017

Saws often are needed for electrical work, and the cordless saw models available today are more powerful, smaller, lighter and easier to use compared with older models.



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Looking Forward To It: What 2017 Has in Store
 for Technology

It’s hard to predict precisely what electrical contractors will face in 2017, because many things will influence the landscape where they work. However, there’s every reason to believe that new and emerging technology in a changing digital world should bring opportunity and optimism.



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