Working With A Roofing Contractor: Part 1

First In A Series

Roles, Responsibilities, and Rapport

When it comes to installing a roofing system on a commercial building, several parties may be involved, including the building owner/facility manager, the roofing manufacturer’s representative, and the roofing contractor. So, who does what, and how do each of these individuals interact to get the project completed?

“The way that everyone works together is determined by the complexity or size of the roofing installation,” said Tom Allen, President of Allen Consulting Group, Inc. in Wilton, Iowa and an independent sales representative for Duro-Last® Roofing, Inc.

In Allen’s experience, the contractor and building owner/facility manager typically collaborate on projects that are fairly straightforward. Allen estimates that between 50-70 percent of roofing projects proceed this way.

“These are typically light commercial to simple industrial jobs,” noted Allen.

When the project becomes more complex or larger, the roofing manufacturer’s representative often steps in.

According to Allen, the sales representative can provide a variety of services to the contractor such as:

  • Giving sales presentations.
  • Answering technical questions.
  • Introducing third-party products such as insulation, skylights, or other roofing system components.
  • Facilitating the integration of photovoltaic or rooftop garden systems by bringing in those product vendors as necessary.
  • Providing other resources to the contractor and/or building owner that will help keep the roofing project moving forward smoothly.

When a particularly complicated project arises, some manufacturers bring in a technical representative to provide additional expertise and recommendations.

“A good example of a complex, multifaceted job might be replacing a restaurant roof that has multiple vents, exhaust fans, and/or air conditioning units,” said Allen.

Given that the primary parties in most roofing jobs will be the building owner and contractor, it’s critical that the two work well together and communicate effectively.

In our next posting, we will highlight how to properly screen a contractor to make sure they are the perfect fit for you and your roofing project.