As a Risk Manager. I spend a fair amount of time talking with business owners about the “What Ifs” in their company – from accidents on the job, supply chain disruptions, to natural disasters and a myriad of events in between. What construction owners often overlook is what happens if they lose their key qualifier agent in states they’re licensed in – what would happen to their business?
The Solution: Qualifier Disruption Contingency Planning
A Qualifying Agent is a person qualified by the individual state’s licensing board for the contractor who has the responsibility to supervise, direct, manage and control the construction activities on a job for which he/she has obtained a permit. This person is a critical and vital part of your team and requires a contingency plan in place if he/she can no longer act as the agent.
5 Step process to creating your contingency plan:
- Identify all states in which you currently do business AND the states you would like to do business in the next 5 years. Record any and all key information about licensing requirements including any specialty licenses and/or classifications
- For each of the states, create a detailed map of timelines required for appointing a new qualifying agent. These will vary by state, so it’s important to look up each one and NOT make assumptions.
- Perform an internal audit of your team. Who are the current qualifying agents – are any close to retirement, going out on medical/maternity leave, etc. Identify any red flags
- Do a deeper audit into your team – who are your contingent team members that can step up to perform the duties of Qualifying Agent if indeed your current one leaves or can no longer perform their duties. Identify the certifications/training/experience they need and the timelines to get that done. How quickly can you get them up to speed?
- Create an open communication plan between offices and departments and continually review your contingent plan so you can adjust when needed. The goal is to have constant training programs in place for your “B Team” – to ensure you always have at least 2 people in each jurisdiction ready to move into an empty spot if needed. This now becomes part of your internal processes and procedures and a vital part of your overall business interruption contingency plan.
It’s not if, but when a Qualifying Agent will leave your firm, implementing this simple 5-Step Contingency Plan will help mitigate against any business stops and gaps down the road.
Material posted on this website is for informational purposes only and does not constitute a legal opinion or medical advice. Contact your legal representative or medical professional for information specific to your legal or medical needs.