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. 

While energy innovation enjoys a surge of popularity, one crucial element is still lacking: financing.

On a $28 million infrastructure contract, a contractor suffered an $11 million loss because of high charges by the utility companies for their part of the installation. The contractor, it turned out, got no remedy in court and, therefore, no means of recouping this major loss.


Along with many new trends that electrical contractors are finding themselves involved with these days, there are some surprises. While ECs have traditionally wired the power for elevators, much of the work has been left to mechanical contractors.

According to the Consortium for Energy ­Efficiency’s 2013 State of the Efficiency Program Industry report, “U.S. and Canadian combined gas and electric Demand Side Management program budgets reached $9.6 billion in 2013, representing a 2 percent increase over 2012 DSM budgets.

More on Your Business

 
Branch Circuits: Required Lighting Outlets, Part VII
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210.70(A)(2) Lighting Outlets Required Lighting outlet and wall switch provisions for dwelling units, guest rooms (hotel, motel and similar occupancies) and certain areas in non-dwelling occupancies are covered in 210.70(A) through (C).

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Reasons to Rent
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When Ernie Audet Jr. wants a new piece of equipment quickly, he rents. Audet wastes time and money when he lacks equipment needed for a job. Rental equipment is a $25 billion industry and almost all contractors—large and small—depend on it. Audet’s firm, E. W.

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Can I Get a Witness?
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Construction companies often retain the services of consultants/experts to assist in preparing a claim or in presenting a dispute in court or arbitration. The range of services offered is extensive. Almost all bar journals and trade magazines carry advertisements for expert advice and testimony.

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Tool Management Solutions
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Keeping track of company-owned tools has never been an easy task, even for very small firms. And for large organizations, effectively managing tools is a huge undertaking. “I started with our company as a driver,” said Rob Cherry, president of Osborne Electric in Oklahoma City.

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Employment Deficit Could Hit In 2004
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Could the shortage of skilled workers in electrical construction, voice/data/video (VDV) and integrated building systems (IBS) hit sooner than you think? As reported in the June and August issues of ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR, a shortage seems virtually certain for 2008-2010.

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Stopping the Profit Drain
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No one would put their profits on shelves each year to sit and lose value, but that is what many contractors do by ordering and keeping unnecessary inventory. Overordering of inventory costs electrical contractors thousands of dollars a year in lost profits.

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Searching for Greener Pastures
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It’s certainly no secret that many areas of the country are seeing less viable work to bid, and yet more competition for the jobs that are going ahead.

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