A day in the life of a drainage contractor Part Two
I have appointment to visit a site near Bromsgrove at half past two, so I take a quick look at the map to remind me of the route and print out a plan of where I think the site is; sometimes it is not always obvious. I also load up the electric plans to see if there are any cables in the location, best to be forewarned. The car is loaded up with the laser levels and the GPS device. I’m almost out of fuel so I drive up the yard to fill up.
It should take around thirty to thirty five minutes to get there which means I need to leave at one forty five, forty five minutes before I’m supposed to be there. As a contractor, who is trying to sell something, avoiding being late is important. I’m sure everyone will agree that hanging around, wasting time, waiting for someone to turn up is very annoying. It is not a good idea to irritate potential customers. I arrive early which means I have time to kill, but it gives me a chance to check the site access, making sure there are no low bridges and weight restrictions and to wander around the site itself, which is good preparation.
The job is small but straight forward, the client is one we have worked for successfully before and very little, if any, selling or explanation is needed. The field has an obvious fall across it and a brook at the bottom providing a perfect outlet, I take a couple of levels near the outlet just to make sure but the meeting is over quickly. The only unusual request is to get the estimate back to the client before the end of the week, meaning I have only two days, not a hassle but I will have to call the aggregate suppliers today.
I go back via Kenilworth as we have a small gang working on a water supply job, they have just about finished when I turn up and other than a reminder about tidying up and leave the site as clean as possible there is nothing to do. It’s an easy afternoon.
Back at the office and start to call aggregate companies to get the cheapest stone price for the job at Bromsgrove. I call five companies and the conversation is almost exactly the same with each of them. Two give me a price straight away, two say they will call back and I leave an answer machine message with the other. I call another of our gangs and check whether or not they need gravel for tomorrow, and then make the arrangements. In the office we have a quick conversation about tomorrow’s team sheet, which is almost the same as today. After that is sorted the office quietens down and I start to look at producing a proposal plan for the Bromsgrove job.
It’s normally around six or half past that I call it a day and start packing up and switching off the computers, photocopiers, etc. I only live around a fifteen minute drive from the office, so my commute is thankfully short. I know a number of people who travel to Birmingham or London to work, I don’t know they put up with such a long and dull commute.