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Steps to achieving world-class contractor management

As a leader how do you approach improving business performance? When it comes to profitability is it a top line revenue focus or a bottom line efficiency gain?

To achieve world class contractor management requires excelling in three key areas, safety, quality and productivity.


Using contractors used to be a technique used by companies to alleviate their responsibility for providing safety systems. Since then legislation has changed, legally contractors are effectively employees when it comes to safety ( in Australia see OH&S Act 2017  Part 1 Division 3 Subdivision 2 Item 7 Sub Item 1b)

Female worker shake hand with male worker

This change in mindset requires a shift in approach as it is the company’s responsibility to ensure the contractors do risk assessments, safe work method statements, are involved in toolbox talks, are on training registers, and require supervision.

“legally contractors are effectively employees when it comes to safety”


Warehouse worker talking on the phone holding clipboard in a large warehouse
Maintaining quality standards is core. The basis of any good quality system is documentation and record keeping. The process should have traceability throughout to ensure each step is being done in accordance with the desired outcome, and to ensure that quality is guaranteed.
These records need to be secured, audit-able and saved for an extended period typically at least 8 years.
Using contractors should not impact on quality, similar to safety, contractors require the same documentation and training as internal staff.

 ” The basis of any good quality system is documentation and record keeping.  


Similarly maintain operational standards is key to productivity. Six sigma manufacturing has taught us to reduce the variance in our process so we can use incremental change to drive lasting performance gains. Standards drive process stability and repeatability.

By measuring the performance of contractors we get benchmarking which can be used to drive improvement and identify training opportunities. Metrics can really help drive a culture of continuous improvement and provides both contractor and company a base from which to work with. Typical examples include average time on-site, jobs started on-time and customer feedback scores

 “Metrics can really help drive a culture of continuous improvement.  


The days of using contractors to simplify business process are gone. Contractors should be viewed as employees, and though this adds complexity it also presents opportunity. Contractors can add more value through improved quality and productivity while keeping safe.

Want to know how to adapt your service business to become more competitive and profitable? Download your free business guide now…

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