5 common earthmoving business mistakes and how to overcome them

In the earthmoving industry, as in most other industries and professions, mistakes can and do happen. Try as you might to avoid them, but mistakes are simply a part of life; they can rarely ever be 100 per cent eradicated. Because of that, it’s important for earthmoving small business owners to know what to do when mistakes happen in their business and how they may go about fixing them.

So, let’s take a look at some commonly made mistakes in earthmoving and the options available to you should they occur in your earthmoving business.

1. Underestimating or overestimating what you can actually deliver

Earthmoving business owners will often have great earthmoving business ideas, but on occasion it can be easy to both underestimate and overestimate what your business can realistically deliver for its clients. In such scenarios, earthmoving small business owners may feel that they don’t possess the capabilities to meet the specific needs of their clients.

On the other side of the coin, occasionally earthmoving business owners may overestimate the earthmoving services and jobs that they can deliver to an acceptable standard. This can be incredibly harmful to the reputation of an earthmoving business, because over promising and under delivering is a surefire way to develop the kind of negative industry reputation that no business owner wants or needs.

To avoid such sticky situations, you may consider developing a thorough capability statement to present to existing clients and potential new clients. This document effectively acts like a menu in a restaurant; it details all the things that you can provide for your clients.

Providing clients and prospects with a capability statement will clearly demonstrate what your earthmoving clients can and can’t expect from your business. If you introduce new earthmoving services to your earthmoving business, be sure to add them to your capability statement.

2. Ignoring the smaller jobs

When starting an excavation business in Australia a common mistake that can be easily made by earthmoving companies is ignoring the smaller jobs, which may come back to haunt your business. Being fussy with the jobs you choose to accept is an inherent and strategic part of running your own business.

Big jobs with Tier 1 companies are great to have on your company’s resume. But in the race to win tenders and secure jobs with such high-profile companies, you may be missing out on countless jobs with smaller organisations. While generally less lucrative for your earthmoving business, these smaller are also easier to get.

A sound business development strategy for your earthmoving small business

may include servicing a range of SME organisations to ensure that revenue continues to flow into your earthmoving business while you chase the major jobs from Tier 1 companies

3. Putting tender opportunities in the “too hard” basket

There’s no way to sugarcoat it – the standard tender process for work offered by government organisations can be time-consuming and laborious. As such, some earthmoving companies may prefer to deal with confirmed jobs.

This is mostly because they believe tenders involve a longer waiting period with only modest chances of winning the contract and gaining the work. Well, tendering is indeed a longer process, but the rewards (often lucrative multi-year contracts that guarantee work for your business) can be worth the effort of responding to a request for tender.

4. Working ‘in’ your small business and not ‘on’ your small business

A key part of succeeding as a small business owner is avoiding attempting to be everything to everyone. This typically results in small business owners working very long hours to ensure work is delivered on time and to the brief. Delegation can be key here; yes, it is your business, but that doesn’t mean you can’t delegate key tasks to your senior staff.

Doing so will free up much of your time; you can then commit that time to other business critical tasks such as new business development, identifying opportunities for strategic partnerships, or negotiating long-term agreements with providers.

5. A modest understanding of the finances behind your business

While your earthmoving small business may employ a qualified financial controller, financial advisor, or accountant, as the business owner it’s still important that you possess the financial nous to be able to read the financial state of play in your earthmoving small business.

An underdeveloped understanding of business finance can result in the failure of your earthmoving small business. To avoid such fate, take proactive steps to understand the financial state of play in your earthmoving small business.

In doing so, in time you will gain increased financial visibility across your entire operation. Without this information, it can be very difficult to successfully manage your earthmoving business.

BizCover helps earthmoving small business owners to quickly compare competitive quotes for earthmoving business insurance* online so they can get the coverage they need and get on with their day. While BizCover conveniently gives you the power to buy business insurance online in 10 short minutes, we are always happy to discuss the insurance needs of your business with you. Call us anytime on 1300 920 868 and discover how we can help your small business.

*This information is general only and does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. It should not be relied upon as advice. As with any insurance, cover will be subject to the terms, conditions and exclusions contained in the policy wording. © 2022 BizCover Pty Limited, all rights reserved. ABN 68 127 707 975; AFSL 501769.

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