see Part 1 here
One of the best ways to attract new talent is to keep your existing talent. It signals to new and potential employees that people enjoy working at your company and are well-cared for. But with an industry turnover rate of 56.9% in 2021, this is easier said than done. The construction industry was already dealing with a labor shortage and the increased demand for work has only made the labor market more competitive. Wages and benefits can only go so far, so what else can companies do to entice workers to stay?
1. PRIORITIZE SAFETY AND MAKE IT ACCESSIBLE
It’s a fact that construction work comes with a higher safety risk than other industries. And while companies can’t eliminate that risk, it is their responsibility to reduce it as much as possible. Clear and enforced safety procedures, proper safety equipment, and ongoing training are the minimum requirements for creating a safe work environment.
Safety is a shared responsibility, so it’s essential that everyone, from field workers to site managers, is involved. Each employee should know how to fill out a safety report and have access to the same tools and resources to help ensure worksite safety. Successful companies get workers more involved by offering incentives for additional training. In this area, there is no such thing as too much.
2. BUILD SKILLED LABOR WITH ADVANCEMENT OPPORTUNITIES
If you aren’t offering your employees opportunities to grow, you will lose them to someone who will. Be open with your employees about advancement opportunities and hire internally whenever possible. Not only does this boost loyalty in those promoted, but it also demonstrates to others that they could move up. Make continuing education an ongoing discussion in employee evaluations. Find out what skills they’re interested in and provide them with opportunities to pursue them, whether that’s an educational stipend, on-the-job training, or being flexible with their schedule for classes. Be supportive, and you will benefit from their new skills as much as they do.
3. IMPROVE PROCESSES TO IMPROVE WORKING CONDITIONS
The construction industry is facing various challenges right now. As a contractor, you need to make every dollar and every hour of labor count. But without smart processes, you could be underutilizing some assets while overextending others. Not only does this lead to increased labor costs, but overworked laborers are at a higher risk for injury.
Consider investing in technology, like construction or project management software, to improve your operations and optimize your labor use. Platforms like these centralize important assets like employee, equipment, and jobsite data to increase and improve decision-making around job planning, scheduling, and allocation. In addition to creating more balanced workloads, faster scheduling and visibility allows for workers to know what their shift will be like well in advance, allowing them to better plan outside of work and improving overall work-life balance.
There’s more to a good job than receiving a decent paycheck. Like any employee, construction workers want to work for companies that value and care for them. Adopting long-term practices that improve working conditions and provide opportunities to grow professionally will go a long way toward cultivating loyal employees that add value to your company.
About the Author:
Marcel Broekmaat is chief product officer at Assignar, a cloud-based construction operations platform. For more, visit www.assignar.com.
Modern Contractor Solutions, September 2022
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