Does your contracting business need a system?

Does your contracting business need a system?

Does your contracting business need a System?

– By Paul Winans – Remodelers Advantage – 

What is a system?

“I need my company to be more systematized.” I hear this often from renovation company owners. What exactly does that mean and why is it so alluring?

I have long been looking for a definition of “system” that addresses what I think it means. The definition that works for me is, “a written procedure(s) for a given situation that produces the likelihood of positive predictable results”.

How to establish a system

A good place to start if you’re looking to establish a system is simply to write down what has worked best in the past. Typically those who are most familiar with the company’s routines, (the people who are actually doing the work), are best positioned to help create workable procedures.

Put it in writing

Systems don’t have to be written down. But when they’re not it makes it harder to ensure the successful and regular application of them.

Even systems that are put in writing, however, require that the organization that developed them has the discipline to make sure the same procedures are applied consistently.

Procedures are the backbone of a company’s system. The business owner that teaches his staff to hold one another accountable regarding using established procedures outlined within the systems creates value within the company.

Creating systems for success

Having a system doesn’t prevent things from ever going wrong, but it does increase the likelihood of things going well.

When systems are in place, reliance on individuals is lessened. People know what is expected of them and the procedures to follow in order to achieve success.

Ultimately, companies that demonstrate regularity and consistency are known to be more successful.

Business owners tend to think they’re in the business of renovating when they’re actually responsible for the continual renovation of their own businesses.  Writing down insights and solutions and applying them with consistency can help your company to become a systems-based enterprise with better opportunities for success.

Paul Winans, an expert trainer at Remodelers Advantage (, a Maryland-based firm that works with contractors in both Canada and the USA, ran a highly successful renovation business for 29 years with his wife Nina. Their firm used a systems-oriented approach with, for example, manuals for every position in the firm. Paul may be reached at


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