Every construction industry faces different challenges and issues.
Fluctuating markets, increasing costs, labor shortages, changing tax laws, fuel pricing, legal issues, worker retention, etc. In construction, the two most common challenges companies face are labor shortages and retaining quality workers.
While these challenges can be detrimental to any business, labor issues are particularly damaging to contractors and companies in the construction industry. While having an employee leave in the middle of a project can be difficult for most companies, for construction companies, losing a highly-skilled worker or a top engineer in the middle of a project can be devastating. It can derail months of work and cause interminable headaches.
This is why it is vital for any construction company to find ways to retain their workers, most especially the highly skilled ones. In today’s economy with a large number of available positions and a limited labor pool to fill those positions, construction companies need to think innovatively.
It is too easy for your valuable personnel to find greener pastures in a different company. To avoid exactly that, here are five effective ways of retaining workers in the construction industry:
5 Effective Ways to Retain Workers in the Construction Industry
1. Provide Benefits that Matter
In an era where employees can and often do switch companies at the drop of a hat, is important to make your employees trust you and be loyal to you. This is why providing your construction industry employees with benefits that will make positive contributions to their lives matters. Contributions and matching programs for 401(k)s and other retirement investment vehicles go a long way towards engendering loyalty.
The goal is to differentiate yourself from the other employers in the area. If you care about your employees, they will return that care. A good way to look at it is an employee is not there because he or she likes the work. They are there to provide for their families. If you help them achieve that, they will bend over backward for you.
Health insurance options that limit their out of pocket expenses, bonus structures that are within their reach, flexible time off, paid maternity or paternity, all of these will engender trust. Everyone offers basic benefits. Offer more and your employees will reward you for it.
2. Health and Safety
Everyone knows that the construction industry includes more physical labor and more possibility for injuries than other industries.
Sure, you can get injured at a desk job. You could trip, or accidentally staple yourself. But that pales in comparison to falling off a roof, getting run over by a concrete truck or getting electrocuted.
This is also one of the reasons why providing them with better than average health care benefits go a long distance. However, you can help even further by developing and enforcing a strong employee safety program. Strict adherence to OSHA, and making sure that everyone follows the rules not only reduces your exposure to liability but demonstrates that you have their welfare at heart.
Yes, OSHA guidelines can often be laborious, and can often feel excessive. But they do work. And strict adherence will gain you the reputation of someone who is no-nonsense when it comes to employee safety. That reputation is worth gold, especially in an industry where accidents happen.
Apart from benefits, you can create small improvements that make your employees feel respected. Let your staff have access to a place or area where they can take their breaks, and even regularly provide food and water to ensure they’re physically at their best.
3. Training and Learning Opportunities
If you want to keep employees long term, you need to make your company a place where they can grow, where what they do is not just a job but a career. The best way to do that is to create a system of advancement and encourage your employees to utilize it. In order to increase productivity while also retaining employees, provide them with training and learning opportunities.
Employees become more confident and productive when they gain more knowledge and skills. They will begin to apply those skills when working. As they become proficient, having a set ladder that they can climb, a set advancement structure will give them the impetus to stay around.
They can do the same job somewhere else, but why would they if at another company their job is a dead-end? Having them learn, having them stay and grow helps them, and you. You get to keep their knowledge and their experience, and their loyalty.
4. Make Use of Technology
As technology advances continuously and at exponential rates, many products are becoming available on the market that we hadn’t thought of a few years ago. Artificial Intelligence, Robotics, and even Drones can make tasks easier, and sometimes liven up a monotonous workday.
For example, drones can scan and inspect worksites much faster than two or three employees. The drone can complete the task in ten minutes, while the employees can do it in a few hours. And flying a drone can enliven the work environment and provide yet another task that they can learn and grow with.
Technology is no longer just a supportive service. It has become a strategy to enhance and grow companies. Seek it out, embrace the new possibilities it opens. It may require thinking out of the box, but the world is moving forward, and as time passes, technology will play a greater and greater role in all of our lives. There is no reason to stay stuck in the past.
5. Make Use of a Construction Software
Providing a hassle-free workday is also a great way to lessen the chances of losing employees. As a matter of fact, increasing job frustration is a prime way to lose them. An effective way to lessen day to day frustration is to use construction management software. This is a collaboration tool that can help enhance productivity and efficiency so that tasks get completed with fewer people.
Using construction software makes it easier for employees to share and review blueprints, budget, profiles of subcontractors, send images, documents, and communicate with each other. This way, your crew can have access to all the necessary information in one secure place. Not only will the day to day hassles of miscommunication be lessened, but productivity will increase. Its’s a win-win.
Luckily, finding the best construction software is not hard to find, most especially because Pro Crew Software was developed specifically for this purpose.
With Pro Crew Software, you can avoid losing employees because it contains the core ingredient in building better relationships with your crew – Communication. You can communicate with your employees, subcontractors, track hours and tasks, schedule meetings, send images, videos, and documents, get access to all schedules in one device, and a lot more.