How can the tools you use help you work faster and harder while not compromising on quality? John Dabb, sales and marketing director at Hyde, takes a look.
Not having enough hours in the day is a common complaint on the building site and when the project manager is determined to squeeze every inch out of them to get those deadlines met, it’s little wonder that builders can be left feeling under pressure and stressed out. When you are self-employed, time – or the lack of it – can feel like even more of a burden, as time equals money, there’s no doubt about that.
Aside from some of the more obvious time burglars, such as delivery of materials being delayed, weather conditions halting work and cash flow, your tools and equipment can also have a huge bearing on things, serving either to slow you down or speed you up, and never really in equal measure. While the last thing you want to do is carry out any work in such a hurry that it ends up less than perfect, and at risk of a follow-up call out at best – tarnishing your reputation into the bargain – working efficiently is a skill that builders do need within their arsenal, and having the right tools to hand undoubtedly helps.
Being organised is one sure-fire way of saving time – make sure your van is organised and your tool bag is tidy as a positive first step, as spending ages scrabbling around for that power drill you really need right now will just slow you down.
However, there are other very practical and hands-on ways that may be a little less obvious that can help save time on site and therefore, hopefully, stop you from pulling your hair out with stress too. Many tools promise to change builders lives in terms of their time-saving innovations, yet it can be difficult to know which of these are genuine and which will leave you paying out for the promises on the packaging, but still short on time on site. The trick is to not fall for the marketing gimmicks at face value, but rather make some considered choices over where you really could do with saving wasted time during the day and then look for suitable solutions.
Take the Bora Speedhorse as a good example. Incredibly, it takes under two seconds to fully assembly this essential piece of kit and about the same again to take down. Quality isn’t compromised though and the legs won’t wobble, but it does mean an end to battling to put up a workhorse not knowing which bit goes where or which end to start on first. With the Bora Speedhorse teardown can start with either leg to really speed things up, particularly when, quite frankly, you have better things to do.
Working conditions can also slow you up and even lead to calling it a day when really you need to be cracking on to meet those deadlines. Again, going in armed with some suitable tools for the job can really make all the difference when the clock is ticking, with the Stabila LED spirit level being a case in point. Its two integrated LED light sources ensure intense, balanced illumination for optimum readability of horizontal and vertical vials, even under poor visibility conditions, so no more squinting and scrabbling for the torch on your smartphone with one hand in order to take a dubious measurement.
Laser levels too, offer a super-fast yet accurate way of measuring up. These are a favourite tool among estate agents after all, and it’s well known that they are big on the time is money theory. The LD520, for example, is Stabila’s highest specification model, with a number of key features that ensure efficiency as well as accuracy, including a built-in digital camera, simple navigation and a handy built-in calculator that provides an easy estimating tool too.
Such solutions are just of the few of the many out there, that can leave you not only completing projects in a timely fashion, but even clocking off early to spend time down the pub or getting home to your family.