What is wrong with tradesmen?

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Phil Pascoe

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I have a decent sized job starting 11/12, underfloor electric heating, tiling and the removing and reinstalling of a stove. All I need to ensure is that the electrician, the tiler and the stove installer have spoken to each other but none of the three can be bothered to answer either phone calls or emails. Surely it's professional courtesy to answer all calls, let alone calls from the chap who's paying your bills?
 
Yes. I'd expect a call back within 24 hrs at most - at least from 1 out of 3. They can't all be in surgery at the same time, can they ?
(maybe they had a team catastrophe on their current job together !)

I remember a new director taking over a sales team in a FTSE100. By the time he'd finished with us everyone was sprinting to make sure no phone ever rang more than 3 rings !
 
You need a site visit where all are present , you explain what you want , the sparky tells you that’s not possible because you need x y z , the tiler will complain that he can’t tile over and box in the cables and the stove fitter probably disagree with all of you . Getting different trades to agree a plan of action where all co operate with each other is never easy .the best option is a firm that have their own sub contractors for the various trades .. good luck
 
Trying to coordinate several trades is difficult if it is only an occasional need.

Companies specialising in project management normally have a set of fairly tame contractors who will respond as that is where a lot of their future work will originate.

We recently moved into a new house which needed significant work. Rather than organise separate trades myself I used builders who had all the contacts - electricians, plasterers, gas engineers etc.

It may have cost me a premium to do it this way - but if (for instance) a plasterer was needed over the weekend to progress a part of the job, it happened. Were it just me shouting for action I may have waited days or weeks if they had other priority work.
 
I have a decent sized job starting 11/12, underfloor electric heating, tiling and the removing and reinstalling of a stove. All I need to ensure is that the electrician, the tiler and the stove installer have spoken to each other but none of the three can be bothered to answer either phone calls or emails. Surely it's professional courtesy to answer all calls, let alone calls from the chap who's paying your bills?
It's because you are low down in the pecking order. As the others have pointed out, people go where there is repeat work first, leaving homeowners at the bottom of the pile as filler around other things.
 
They're quite happy to take on the work, the only problem atm to me is the lack of communication. I dare say (indeed I hope) they have communicated between themselves, but why can't they tell me they have? An email takes seconds.
 
I'd be tempted to say the client needs certain reassurances and without them the jobs off. You need a meeting of all parties.
It wouldn't matter how good they are, if they cannot bother to communicate then they are not worth using. Why should you be subjected to the stress.

Colin
 
They're nightmares.

The bloke who "thatched" the roof here turned up, dumped his tools and straw after a week, then said that he was going to finish off another job and would be back soon.

I told him not to bother coming back and I'll just get someone else.....worked like majik.

Thinking about it, I wish I'd let him go as he turned out to be a thieving git.
 
I have a decent sized job starting 11/12, underfloor electric heating, tiling and the removing and reinstalling of a stove. All I need to ensure is that the electrician, the tiler and the stove installer have spoken to each other but none of the three can be bothered to answer either phone calls or emails. Surely it's professional courtesy to answer all calls, let alone calls from the chap who's paying your bills?
No, of course not. What are you thinking?
 
Take it as a warning, if they don't talk to you now any problems after completion are not going to be at even this priority, might also be worth speaking to your insurance company, contractors will tell you they are insured but may be exaggerating - ask me how I know - if you inform your insurance it may cost you to cover them not being but if one were to injure the other on your site and not be covered it could be costly, never been in that pickle but......
 
Do any of the motley crew have links to those sites that post ratings for tradesmen?Might be worth a search to see what rating(s) they have.Then messaging them about wanting to maintain the rating......
 
Drives me made when they go to another job. Doesn’t exactly make you feel a priority. Sometimes I feel it’s better to be a bit bolshie so they want to finish you job and get away from your nagging!
 
Do any of the motley crew have links to those sites that post ratings for tradesmen?Might be worth a search to see what rating(s) they have.Then messaging them about wanting to maintain the rating......
I have no reason to question their competence or doubt the job will be done as planned, I just wish they had the courtesy to acknowledge messages. I often reply "Thanks" just to acknowledge I've read a message - that's all it takes.
 
I have no reason to question their competence or doubt the job will be done as planned, I just wish they had the courtesy to acknowledge messages. I often reply "Thanks" just to acknowledge I've read a message - that's all it takes.
I find the younger tradesmen/ women are this way inclined . You may get nothing more than a thumbs up emoji or you might not get that . But my son has taught me that 2 ticks on whats app is unread and 2 blue ticks tells you it’s been read . Normal messages will say delivered if you have your notifications turned on - many will assume you’re tech savvy so it’s assumed you know this . But when all said and done there is no excuse for leaving a customer in the dark ..
 
I think many tradesmen (and I'm guilty of this sometimes) find it hard to focus on more than one job at a time. They put 100% into the job they are working on and only start thinking about and planning the next job once they actually start it, this is no excuse for not returning emails etc though.

My favourite means of communication with customers is definitely Whatsapp for most day to day things and email for more important/official stuff.
 
I don't know it's not just tradesmen, a lot of people no longer answer phone calls, call you back or have good communication skills, it seems very rare somebody is actually responsive thesedays, this is more of a societal issue, possibly because of social media taking up a huge part of their brain and it's over worked, I agree that there's no excuse for not replying to an email or phonecall.
 
WhatsApp sounds like a good plan. If you add them all to the same group with your address/job as the tile. Then a brief intro to each other, project overview and a couple of site photos. That way you’ve done most of the work and they just need to comment. Not done it with trades but asynchronous collaboration does work well with our clients so maybe worth a try.
 
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