BECI has come up with the Local Contractors Programme that is aimed at addressing the growing needs of local contractors. Historically, the organisation provided construction guarantees to the top end of the market. The Local Contractors Programme is designed for local citizen-owned contractors that are emerging and still in need of guidance into the next stages of business growth. Often times, smaller contractors face a number of challenges, all of which need to be addressed including; weak or non-existent construction technical education background among the smaller contractors; lack of understanding of contracts and the application of clauses; and how to boost project and business management skills. Smaller contractors also face the hurdles of weak construction management, waste management, and quality management skills; as well as a lack of financial acumen compared with larger contractors. Insufficient capital, a weak balance sheet and a lack of sufficient assets to provide as collateral can also hold local contractors back. Many of these contractors have limited understanding of pricing structures and quality standards. They also have poor credit arrangements with suppliers. BECI has now developed sufficient skills in the underwriting and technical expertise of bonds over time and has adapted those skills to creating a unique underwriting criteria for smaller contractors, thus developing a product that best suits them. It provides a contractor’s guarantee, encompassing both the support and monitoring of the small contractors. BECI underwrites each contractor individually and provides the employer with a guarantee. The financial burden on small contractors is reduced by a lower level of collateral being required, and risk is mitigated by co-signing with the contractor. When working with local contractors BECI negotiates good credit terms from its policyholders for materials needed, and can help the emerging contractor gain skills through monitoring and mentoring. The contractor is also assisted with a full detailed construction programme.