Posts Tagged ‘stimulus money’

Is Boost in Mfg a Leading Indicator to Construction Rebound?

January 4, 2010

Stimulus spending is said to be behind today’s reported jump in manufacturing spending. It occurs to me that we may be witnessing the stimulus “mouse” working its way down the belly of the construction “snake” as projects progress down the path towards groundbreaking. We’ll know in the coming months if the snake fully digests its meal.

What Does a Construction Job Cost in Stimulus Dollars?

November 2, 2009

The folks over at just released an interesting analysis of  the effects of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) on construction employment on a state by state basis.  Though the data presented is interesting, I think it creates more questions than it answers. For instance, if you look at the two subsets of data below two questions pop to mind; 1- What has Massachusetts figured out that makes it so much more efficient at turning stimulus dollars into construction jobs? 2- It’s no surprise that California is one of the most expensive places to create construction jobs (or do just about anything, for that matter) but they really stick out when you compare them in size and population density to the second through fifth states in the “Cost per Construction Job” ranking.

Top Job Generators
State Amount Awarded Amount Received Jobs Created Cost per job
MA $1,500 $361 5174 $69,831
NY $2,900 $838 5108 $164,101
TX $2,500 $1,300 4199 $325,891
CA $3,700 $2,200 4197 $535,171
OH $1,500 $462 3820 $120,908
Most Expensive Jobs per Stimulus Dollar
State Amount Awarded Amount Received Jobs Created Cost per job
CA $3,700 $2,200 4197 $535,171
CT $324 $221 432 $511,053
NH $221 $128 284 $448,984
LA $723 $420 1056 $397,895
SC $810 $366 941 $389,290


Update: Apparently what Massachussetts has figured out is how to fudge the math. Thanks to Pete Abair for the tip.


You’ve Landed a Stimulus Project, Now What?

May 11, 2009

You and your team sharpened your pencils and beat back the most ravenous pack of competitors that you’ve ever seen in your career to win a coveted stimulus project. Congratulations.

Now it’s the morning after and you realize that things will be different with this project. Scrutiny from the government, the media and even the general public will be higher than you’ve ever experienced. Also, the razor thin margins that you have left for yourself mean that you have less wiggle room than ever to get this one right.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • What changes did you make in your approach to bidding that led to your winning the contract?
  • Have you made appropriate accommodations to your operations practices in anticipation of the increased scrutiny? Timely, complete reports help a lot. Get out there and snap plenty of pictures.
  • Have you worked with your suppliers (and your subs with theirs) to improve the accuracy of their delivery schedules? Successful Just-In-Time deliveries can add precious days of cash flow while minimizing costly idle time.
  • Pre-Construction Quality meetings with your trades are helpful. In-project Quality meetings are even better. Track exceptions from inception to closure and don’t let schedule pressure affect your expectations for closure. Shortcuts only cost more in the end.

Times have changed. Have you?