Ask For References
One of the most reliable methods for finding a great commercial roofer is to ask another business owner for a reference. Even if you don't know anyone personally, you can easily cold call a business and ask the building owner if they would recommend a roofing contractor. Make sure to ask many people, not just a few. If you do, you'll likely start to notice that certain contractors pop up again and again. This will help you narrow your search. Also make sure to ask if there is a company anyone would recommend not hiring based on poor past experiences and be sure to ask why so you can determine who has a legitimate complaint and who was merely disgruntled. This information is just as helpful.
Check Licensing and Insurance
Make sure to choose a commercial contractor that is licensed and insured. This can be tricky because licensing varies from state to state. Some states like Florida, Wyoming, Colorado, and several others don't require state licenses. Other states like Alaska and California do. Make sure to check a list like this one to see what your state requires. Regardless of licensing, any contractor in any state should have insurance. Ask for proof of both general liability and worker's compensation insurance before hiring.
Read Review Sites
Another great way to choose a contractor is to read both the positive and negative reviews of the business on sites like Google Reviews and the Better Business Bureau. However, make sure to read through the negative reviews and not just glance at the rating. People often post negative reviews based on unreasonable demands. A company that responds to the reviews, both positive and negative, is a good sign of a proactive company that takes customer service and their reputation seriously.
Determine Local vs. Franchise
A consideration you'll need to make when choosing your commercial roofing contractor is whether to choose a local business or a franchise. There are pros and cons to both. Local contractors often have ties to the community and take their reputation seriously as a trusted local business. However, franchises may have better access to equipment and manpower for larger jobs than a local contractor does because of their corporate backing. Locals may also have fewer options for scheduling because of less manpower but may provide superior work. You'll need to decide what you prefer based on the size of your job and your priorities for how quickly it can be scheduled and accomplished.