Streamlining trade package creation

30 January 2024

Despite being labelled as fiddly and time-consuming, trade packages are a necessary evil in the world of construction and contracting. The reason behind employing trade packages goes beyond just paperwork; it’s a strategic move to support subcontractors and optimise the tendering process. Here, we will explore the significance of trade packages, the motivation behind them, and practical steps to streamline the entire process.

The fiddly nature of trade packages

Do you spend hours dragging document after document into folder after folder? Trade packages often involve details, specifications, and requirements that demand meticulous attention. From material lists to project timelines, every aspect needs to be carefully documented. This precise nature can make trade packages seem fiddly and time-consuming. However, it’s essential to recognise the role they play in ensuring project efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and overall success.

Supporting subcontractors and enhancing quoting

The primary motivation behind engaging in trade packages is to support your subbies. By providing comprehensive and organised information, you can empower subbies to understand project requirements better. You know the phrase ‘you scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours’? Well that comes to mind here, as subbies are scratching your back when they shoot you off a quote (no ones getting paid yet). So the least we can do is make their quoting life easier. Ultimately, this benefits both parties, and leads to successful project outcomes.

Streamlining the trade package process

While trade packages may seem daunting, getting your bits and bobs in order early can save you a lot of headaches down the track. Here are some strategies:

1. Label, label, label:

Clear and consistent labelling is crucial for easy navigation through trade packages. Get your team on a naming system and stick with it. Consistency is key. 

2. Break into sub-categories:

Categorising trade packages into sub-sections based on specific criteria can simplify the process. This allows for better organisation and quicker reference when needed.

3. Utilise software solutions:

It would be remiss of us if we didn’t get a cheeky plug in here. Using software tools, like the EstimateOne doc matrix and its various shortcuts, can significantly streamline the trade package process. These tools are designed to enhance efficiency, reduce errors, and save valuable time.

By recognising the role trade packages play in supporting subcontractors and optimising the quoting process, main contractors can approach them with a strategic mindset. Implementing efficient labelling and sub-categorisation, and utilising specialised software like EstimateOne helps to turn this mundane task into a well-organised and manageable aspect of your role and business.