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CSDA Contractor Survey Results Offer Real Insight

Fri March 20, 2009 - National Edition
Construction Equipment Guide

A CSDA contractor member survey, which was completed at the end of 2008 by MemberScope, an independent research firm and division of Research USA based in Chicago, Ill., was conducted to collect operating and financial data from contractor members to provide a profile of the membership.

“The survey is a great tool for CSDA contractors to gauge how their business is doing compared to the industry,” said Patrick O’Brien.

“The survey is very comprehensive and includes information about operations including company background, personnel, accounting and finance, and sales and operations, and with a response rate of almost 40 percent, the findings are solid,” O’Brien added.

Most respondents are S-Corporations and 25.6 percent have one or more branch locations. Nearly one-third of the members who responded are located in the Midwest. More than half of their work is performed in building renovation with 23 percent in new construction and 20 percent in infrastructure — highway, airport, bridge, dams and power plants.

With regards to personnel, there are an average of 25 full-time-equivalent employees at members’ companies with 12.6 of these employees being sawing and drilling operators. The hourly wage for a typical operator who works 40.9 hours per week is $20.29. Dispatchers make an average hourly wage of $22.53 and estimators make $26.33. A typical manager works an average of 49.8 hours a week. Nine out of ten companies responded that they have a safety supervisor and written safety and environmental health programs in place.

The average estimated sales volume for respondents’ companies in 2008 is $2,663,690, up from an average of $2,394,578 reported by these companies for 2005, the first year reported in this survey. The average amount of a company’s sales per truck was $201,155 with a median of $199,000. Flat sawing accounts for 27.8 percent of total sales with core drilling close behind at 25.8 percent. Additional services being offered include selective demolition, decorative cutting, ground penetrating radar and surface preparation.

Operating statement information showed direct operating costs, which ranged from an average of $987,634 for operator/labor costs to $194,631 for diamond tools. Selling expenses including salaries, advertising and travel expenses average $163,171 while general and administrative expenses including managers, office and dispatch wages averaged $617,468. The average profit among all companies combined was $209,388 with a median of $80,000.

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