Contractor selectionDFG Tenders Online will provide an estimated cost of works from all of the contractors included in the system, and list them in ascending price order. If contracts are then awarded solely on price this could mean that the contractors with lower prices are offered more work than they can complete. It could also be that those contractors take longer to complete jobs and do not necessarily rate as highly on customer satisfaction.
This provides an opportunity to incorporate other measures when awarding contracts, and we suggest using:
- Client satisfaction
- Time taken to complete works
These factors can then be rated to create a league table of contractors, as suggested below.
Contractors that know how to treat customers well, respect their home and do a good job are essential for delivering home adaptations well. The DFG Tenders system allows customers to give a 5-star rating for contractors, or you could utilize your own existing systems.
For a simple league table you would take the average star rating for a contractor over a rolling 6 month period and convert that into points, e.g. a contractor with an average rating of 3 stars would be awarded 3 points.
A more sophisticated approach might be to award bonus points to those contractors averaging 4 or above.
One of the biggest complaints about DFG is about the time it takes. For this measure we suggest measuring the number of weeks between grant approval and completion of the works for each job – and again calculating the average for each contractor over a rolling 6month period.
Points would then be awarded, e.g.:
- 5 points for 0–4 weeks;
- 4 points for 4-6 weeks;
- 3 points for 6-8 weeks;
- 2 points for 8-10;
- 1 point for 10-12 weeks; and
- 0 points for anything over 12 weeks.
Add up the points for each contractors at the start of every month and compile them into a league table. Exactly how you use the league will depend on how many contracts you typically award and how many contractors you use. But as an example you could decide to award more jobs to you top 3:
The benefit of this approach is that it introduces an element of competition into the quality of delivery – which should reduce time taken and produce better adaptations leading to happier customers.
It also means that contractors with poorer quality will receive less work, which should result in fewer issues for the Local Authority / Home Improvement Agency.