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Pursuing Business With ‘Risky’ Accounts

Prevailing business wisdom holds that the way to reduce credit risk is to limit credit lines, be stingy in allowing credit and freeze orders on past due accounts. This line of thought posits that it is generally impossible to lower “bad debt” losses without adverse consequences to sales and business expansion. Read The Full Story »

Risk ManagementMore Like This

Risk management is a broad topic and resources are seemingly endless. Here’s a helpful (but by no means complete) list of 25 risk management websites that include information on construction accounting, insurance and surety bonding, and risk management along with a short list of government agencies that provide resources on everything from regulations and safety to risk management and surety bonding. Continue »

Competitive AdvantageMore Like This

Falls cost business owners millions of dollars each year in lost time, compensation and third party lawsuits. In this three-part series, Risk Management addressed important ingredients that must be included in any good fall prevention or protection program. Fall Protection & Prevention Part I covered fall prevention, including harness types. Fall Protection & Prevention Part II covered connectors and anchorages. The series concludes with vital information on lifelines, fall arresters, equipment care and maintenance, and rescue and escape. Continue »

Each year, the Merchants Bonding Company™Leaderboard Program salutes agency partners who have demonstrated their surety savvy and collaboration for growth. We salute Holmes Murphy & Associates of Sioux Falls, SD, for attaining the Champions Tour of surety professionals. Congratulations to Greg Krier for surety professionalism in 2012. Merchants Bonding has partnered with Holmes Murphy & Associates for 25 years. We thank them for the successes we’ve had together and recognize them for sharing our common sense vision. See our online salute to Holmes Murphy of Sioux Falls, SD here. Continue »

Asset ProtectionMore Like This

As a timely conclusion to the series on incentive compensation plans, FMI just released its Incentive Compensation Effectiveness Study: The 2013 U.S. Construction Industry Incentive Compensation Survey. The report is based on the survey results of 224 top executives, found 88 percent of the companies are offering incentive plans. However, only 21 percent of those offering the plans consider them to be working “very effectively.” To help answer why, the study looked at the seven critical issues providing best practices for each. Continue »

Each year, the Merchants Bonding Company™Leaderboard Program salutes agency partners who have demonstrated their surety savvy and collaboration for growth. We salute CHS Surety of The Woodlands, TX for attaining the Champions Tour of surety professionals. Congratulations to Scott Chapman, Kevin McQuain & Justin McQuain for surety professionalism in 2012. Merchants Bonding has partnered with CHS Surety for over a decade. We thank them for the successes we’ve had together and recognize them for sharing our common sense vision. See our online salute to CHS Surety of The Woodlands, TX here. Continue »

Bid BondMore Like This

Since the downturn of the economy, Americans are scrutinizing where and how to spend their money. The care with which people analyze their spending extends to the legal industry, with consumers taking a hard look at what they really need and how they can get the most value for the fewest dollars. Continue »

Dispute ResolutionMore Like This

Under Louisiana law, a federal district court held that a general contractor on a public contract to build a warehouse could sue the owner’s project engineer for negligence based on allegations that the contractor’s ability to perform its obligations to the owner was delayed and rendered more difficult by the engineer’s actions. Those actions included alleged “failure to develop good-quality specifications, insistence on performance of unnecessary work that delayed the construction project, and failure to approve certain payments by the owner.” Continue »

Best PracticesMore Like This

Actuarial projections show Americans are living longer. However, if they are truly to enjoy their retirement years, they need to look differently at their lifetime income needs. A new discussion paper, “Risky Business: Living Longer Without Income for Life,” developed by the American Academy of Actuaries’ Lifetime Income Risk Joint Task Force, explores the difficulties awaiting people in retirement who lack a plan for lifetime income, offers steps individuals can take to prevent shortfalls in retirement income, and discusses public policy options and education initiatives aimed at addressing the problem of inadequate lifetime income. Continue »

Best PracticesMore Like This

The construction and building material supply industries have significant credit challenges. Credit managers or directors of credit constantly balance the need to accept more revenue while mitigating financial risk. It’s a very difficult job, but following three steps of a successful ARM (accounts receivable management) program can help maintain the balance. Continue »

Surety BondingMore Like This

In most cases, deciding whether to file a payment bond claim or a mechanic’s lien claim is simple because only one option is available. On unbonded private projects, the general rule is unpaid subcontractors or suppliers can file a mechanic’s lien against the project jobsite. A mechanic’s lien claim asserts a security interest in the title of the property itself. These claims typically must be filed with the recorder’s office in the county where the property is located, and the claims usually are asserted against the owner’s interest in the property. Continue »

Asset ProtectionMore Like This

A successful incentive compensation plan focuses on achieving company goals by driving the right behaviors in employees. One of the biggest failures of incentive compensation programs is they often do not take into account all the key drivers that will make the company successful. How does a company determine if its incentive plan is effective? If the answer is “no” to any of the following questions, chances are the company is not getting the most benefit out of its plan. Continue »