Categories
Business Construction Insurance Insurance

Boost Your Civil Engineering Game

The field of civil engineering is challenging and requires hard work, dedication, and adaptability as technology continues to advance. And if you’re looking to improve your chances of success as a civil engineer, here are some practical tips that can help you stand out:

Keep up with trends and new technology

Civil engineering is constantly evolving and adapting to new technologies and methodologies. Stay ahead by expanding your knowledge. Focus on enhancing your abilities by mastering software programs like AutoCAD or gaining expertise in structural analysis. Seek diverse projects that challenge your skills and ask experienced professionals for guidance. You can also try the following:

  • Attend workshops and trainings
  • Explore online programs and resources
  • Subscribe to industry newsletters or set up alerts to receive news directly to your email

These will help you keep up with the latest industry trends and make you more valuable to employers and clients.

Articles you may be interested in:

Make sure your platforms are compatible

Learning and mastering new technologies can be exciting, especially in civil engineering, where new technologies are developed daily. However, keep in mind that while using new technologies may impress your clients or team, it’s essential to ensure that all the platforms you use are compatible to avoid any future issues. It would be frustrating to spend a lot of time working on a project on one platform only to find that you cannot access it on another.

So before you jump into working on any project and introducing a new software or tool, ask the following questions:

  • What are your clients or team currently using? 
  • Are there available demos and instructional resources? 
  • Do they have a list of integrations? 
  • What are users saying in their reviews? 

Considering these factors can help ensure that the technology you use will be compatible with what your clients or team needs.

Civil Engineering is a competitive field that requires constant growth and learning for success.

Listen to the community goals

Construction projects, from transportation to residential, must be adaptable to changing conditions and community goals. These could be weather or seasonal changes, economic conditions, and other environmental shifts. You need to be flexible yourself and consider potential changes with your design. But to do that, you must listen to the community

Learn about them

If you’re going to work on a project targeting a specific area and community, you need to be aware of any local routines, practices, or restrictions. What are the weather conditions or seasonal changes? How can the project affect them during and after construction?

Survey and evaluate

You should conduct extensive surveys to evaluate community goals and needs, and identify potential changes that may occur. You can use various tools and techniques such as cost-benefit analysis, multi-criteria analysis, social impact assessment, or environmental impact assessment to quantify and compare the benefits and costs of your project. These tools can also help identify and mitigate potential negative impacts on the social and natural environment.

You can also use different methods to identify and prioritise community goals, such as surveys, interviews, focus groups, workshops, or participatory mapping. Aim to gather as much information possible so you can be better prepared to present it to the stakeholders of the project.

Apply their feedback

Balancing the goals of a construction project with the community’s needs can be challenging. However, gathering feedback from diverse stakeholders, including residents, businesses, organisations, and agencies, can help improve project design, implementation, and management.

The key is to engage both in communication to ensure that their voices are heard and their concerns are addressed.

Learn how to communicate with non-civil engineers

The field of civil engineering requires you to work alongside other professionals who may possess a different level of knowledge or expertise in civil engineering than you do. You are responsible for providing them with the guidance and understanding required for the project. Clear and effective communication of your expertise is crucial to ensure the project’s success. 

Step up your communication skills with practice, from giving a presentation with infographics and videos to hosting a webinar. The goal is to make everyone understand the potential issues that may arise during the project and prepare them for emergencies or delays. By doing so, you can also enhance your performance since everyone is well-informed and on the same page.

Building a professional network is a great way to advance in whatever career you choose.

Build a professional network

Networking is essential in any profession, and civil engineering is no exception. It’s not enough to be technically proficient in your field, you must also have excellent communication and leadership skills. This means you need to hone your ability to express yourself verbally and in writing, work well with others and lead teams effectively.

  • Attend conferences, meetings, or industry events
  • Join professional organisations or groups such as NGOs or academic teams
  • Connect with other experts and industry professionals on LinkedIn

Joining a supportive community of like-minded professionals can provide valuable guidance and support throughout your career. Staying connected also informs you about job openings or industry trends that can further your career as a civil engineer.

Get insurance and stay protected

Working in construction involves many risks, especially when leaving the office environment and working on site.

It is important to prepare yourself for any workplace dangers in consultation with the principal contractor or designated persons responsible for WHS duties, wear appropriate protective clothing, and strictly follow all site safety advice.  Additionally, it is crucial that you have relevant Workers Compensation policy in place for you and your staff to protect them in the event of injury in the workplace.

Insurance is generally required to tender for contracts and often includes a requirement for a minimum limit of Professional indemnity or Design and Construct Professional Indemnity; Public and Product Liability; Workers Compensation, proof of Plant and Machinery insurance and other covers where circumstances are required. Due to the complexities of these contracts, it is highly recommended to consult with insurance professionals to understand specific risks civil engineers face and obtain appropriate coverage. 

East West Insurance Brokerscan assist you in identifying sufficient coverage for your business to ensure this meets your budget and needs. You can reach our brokers by clicking here

Improve your chances of success

Becoming a successful civil engineer is no easy feat, but with dedication and the right mindset, you can set yourself up for a rewarding and fulfilling career. By constantly expanding your knowledge, honing your technical and communication skills, building professional networks, and learning how to communicate outside your profession, you’re well on your way to improving your chances of success in this ever-evolving field.

Categories
Business Construction Insurance Insurance

Keeping your equipment and investment protected

Imagine this – you’ve just started your dream business and invested a significant amount of money in top-of-the-line equipment. Suddenly, one of your machines experiences equipment failure or gets damaged due to an accident. Without proper insurance coverage, you could end up with a hefty bill to repair or replace the equipment. It could also lead to a delay in your business and further drain on your finances.

Avoid unnecessary costs from equipment failure by implementing safety guidelines to prevent accidents and performing regular maintenance to keep your equipment in good condition. For greater security for both you and your business, get Plant & Equipment Insurance. 

In this article, we’ll discuss the following questions: 

What is Plant & Equipment insurance?

Plant & Equipment Insurance is designed to cover physical assets used in the operation of a business, such as vehicles and heavy machinery like cranes and forklifts. Although commonly associated with the construction industry, it can be helpful for different types of businesses and equipment. 

Think about these risks and make a list of any others you think are relevant to your business. This is an important step in making sure your risks as a venue are managed and will help inform the kind of insurance you need. Sitting down with an experienced Insurance Advisor can make this process more efficient and effective.

What do you need from your insurance provider?

How to get started?

To insure your equipment, you must have all the necessary documents ready to present. Remember to provide accurate details to the insurance provider so they can give you an accurate quote. This information may include, but is not limited to: 

  • Type of equipment 
  • Price or value 
  • Age (when it was first used and when it was purchased) 
  • Repairs and modifications 
  • History of claims 

When considering equipment insurance, prioritise which assets you want to insure based on their importance and value to your operations, then set up a budget accordingly. Expect heavy machinery to take the bulk of your budget. It’s also important to consider any specialised maintenance required to keep your equipment running smoothly. 

What needs to be covered?

The next step is to assess the risks associated with your equipment and evaluate the likelihood of these risks occurring. Then check with insurance providers if their policy covers these potential risks: 

  1. Accidental Damage – This covers your equipment’s repair or replacement costs in case of accidental damage caused by exposure to elements like fire, flood, and natural disasters. Damages due to human error could also be included. If you’re unsure, it’s best to confirm with your insurer. 
  1. Theft and Vandalism – Unfortunately, theft and vandalism are real business risks. Surveillance cameras and alarm systems are good preventative measures, but they can’t guarantee absolute protection. In an emergency, Plant & Equipment Insurance can step in to cover the loss or damage caused by malicious acts. 
  1. Equipment breakdown – Even the most reliable and well-oiled machinery can have a bad day. Equipment breakdown coverage can provide financial support for repairs or replacement for unexpected equipment failure, which is crucial during peak production periods. 
Plant & Equipment Insurance can cover costs of equipment failure and loss.

How do you choose the right insurance provider?

Once you have a clear idea of your insurance needs, you can start researching which insurance provider would be a good fit. Each insurance provider has their own sets of policies and coverage. Compare them and take note of the following: 

  • Do they cover repairs or replacements? 
  • Do they cover both? 
  • Are there coverage limits or exclusions? 
  • Are there premiums or policy deductibles? 
  • Additional coverage options? 
  • What is their usual claims process and timeline? 
  • What is the general feedback from customer reviews? 
  • Is the insurance provider in good standing financially or reputation-wise? 

When shopping for services, especially one as important as insurance, request quotes from multiple providers. Don’t be shy about sending emails, and as long as you have questions, keep asking them. Carefully view the fine print and take time to weigh your options so you can make an informed decision. 

You can learn more about how to properly review your insurance here.

Do you need help with insurance?

Accidents can happen no matter how many precautions you take, and equipment failure due to age or constant use is inevitable. Plant & Equipment Insurance acts as a safety net that keeps you protected from unexpected costs that can be incurred. It ultimately helps minimise negative financial impact, allowing you to recover and resume operations swiftly. 

Yes, going through different providers and policies to find the right one is hardly exciting. You’ll have to read tons of paperwork and put in the hours to ensure everything is covered. But there’s no need to stress because you don’t have to shop alone. We’re here to help. At East West Insurance Brokers, we’ll connect you to the top insurance providers in Australia and help you identify what best suits your business needs. Let’s work together to get you covered. Request a free consultation today! 

1800 809 132  | hello@ewib.com.au | www.ewib.com.au

Categories
Construction Insurance

Building costs are sky-high – is your insurance up for it?

The costs of construction are at an all-time high and aren’t showing any signs of settling down. These soaring construction costs from rising inflation rates, labour shortages and supply chain delays are impacting those in the property market, namely commercial property owners. A report by CoreLogic revealed that national construction costs have increased by 7.3% over 2021. This is the highest annual growth we have seen since March 2005.

While this is welcomed news for the construction industry, commercial property owners are painfully enduring the pinch. With these new challenges hanging overhead, the risk of being underinsured becomes a very real threat for many.

What’s causing the inflation of construction costs?

There are several factors responsible for the current increase in building costs, including:

1. A shortage and backlog in production of supplies due to a halt in manufacturing facilities during the lockdowns

2. Price inflation of building materials, mainly timber and steel caused by material shortages

3. Skilled labour shortage

4. Current state infrastructure projects placing a stronger demand on materials and skilled labour

5. Nationwide construction growth

6. Increase in demand for repair and maintenance works due to recent extreme weather events

7. Rise in energy rates, resulting in production costs of some materials to increase

What does this mean for your insurance?

Unfortunately, when there is a spike in building materials and construction prices, this in turn impacts property replacement value and rebuild costs. For example, if your commercial property was damaged by severe weather and you need to make a claim, the costs to rebuild and repair are likely to be greater than what you had initially calculated when you first took out a policy. The discrepancy between what you are insured for, and the true cost of rebuilding is the culprit that requires property owners and investors to pay the difference between the two sums. It could be a substantial amount considering how steep construction prices are climbing.

Another threat to look out for is supply chain and delivery disruptions, which has caused a significant delay in project timelines. It is important that as a commercial property owner you have a valid indemnity period on your policy to ensure that you are covered up until the job is completed. If you are unsure on how to check this, you can always consult a broker or your insurance provider.

How we can help!

It is crucial that commercial property owners take the time to review their insurance cover to protect their business from unforeseen costs. It’s important to note that insurers are also acting in response to these rising demands. They are likely to revise insurance premium renewals to accommodate the unanticipated costs involved in reinstating the policyholder after a loss. To avoid the risk of underinsurance, we’ll work with you to review your insurance plan and recommend a suitable course of action for your business.

The brokers at EWIB ensures that you are well represented to the insurer and that you get the most out of your deal during these unexpected times. Don’t wait until it’s too late before you act. If you are a commercial property owner, the costs of rising construction prices and its accompanying risks apply to you.

Important Note: All insurance policies have exclusions. Please refer to the Product Disclosure Statement or Policy Wording to decide whether an insurance policy meets your needs.

1800 809 132 | hello@ewib.com.au | www.eastwestinsurance.com.au