Case Study: Atlanta Technical College, GA
During the letting of this project the owner was not able to accept alternate methods of rehabilitation due to time constraints on the bid, and scheduling of the work. At this same time, prices for liquid asphalt cement had sky rocketed and conventional rehabilitation was very expensive. We went ahead and bid this project as a conventional undercut along with some thin overlays for the parking lots. Our final prices was about 900 K or so to do the work, with half of the price for the contract being for the dig out of the main bus route.
I knew that time was of the essence because the off-season for the college semester was a short one. You could say that I rolled the dice a bit, but we bid the job straight up as it was let, with the intent of proposing a change order to do Full Depth Reclamation in lieu of the conventional undercut. Experience had shown us that we could do this work for substantially less money in a tenth of the amount of time. We also knew that the owner would likely be enticed by the fact we could complete the project ahead of schedule.
So in a time when our competition was literally beating themselves up with little or no profit margin, we secured the work, and successfully switched the project to the scope that we knew would make us the most amount of profit, while providing the most value for the customer.
Bottom line here is, as a contractor it is ok to make profit, which is not a dirty word by the way. Provided you can give value to your customer. In this particular example, we also gave the Atlanta Technical College President a check back for $25,000.00. She in turn, requested that we do an additional parking lot resurfacing project for her and used that credit up. She said to me during the punch list of the project, “Blair, I have been doing this job for 25 years and you are the first contractor that has ever given me money back!”
To this day, this is one of my favorite case studies as it exemplifies how business is supposed to work. As a business owner, you provide solutions for your customer, they get value at a reasonable price, and you make a reasonable amount of profit in return for providing that service.
So if you are sitting on the fence deciding whether or not this pavement management, in-place recycling, or pavement preservation thing is for you, think about this little story and how it could affect your bottom line back at your office. We did this work in harsh economic times, but made more profit in one month than most small business firms made in an entire year in that season.
Below are some of the photos and facts from the project. If you are a consultant, contractor or service provider and wish to discuss how to grow your business with anything that was covered in this book, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss in detail.
If you are in the contracting business and haven’t been involved with an in-place recycling project in some way, you may want to consider doing so in the near future. There are plenty of ways to provide value to your customers while making a very good profit margin, with little risk of failure or warranty work.
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