A successful construction project has many moving parts. One of the keys to a successful project is the team behind it – laborers, foremen, project managers, CPM/project schedulers, estimators, engineers, surveyors, directors, and everyone else involved. A typical commercial construction project might have a few dozen people involved to a few hundred. Let’s consider how to organize these people to form a strong, effective construction team.
Building a rockstar construction team starts at the beginning of the hiring process. Recruiting is not easy for any industry, and with specialized aspects of the construction industry, it can be especially difficult. Luckily, there are a lot of job boards for construction sectors and online job sites like LinkedIn and Indeed. You may also consider recruiting students (especially at technical colleges) or hiring a staffing firm that will help fill the roles you need to be hired.
The next critical step in building a solid construction team is to refine and enhance your onboarding process. Onboarding comes with a lot of information from HR, paperwork, contracts, and even more paperwork. Through this process, you should be sure your company’s values and culture are communicated – you don’t want an employee to move too far into the company if they will be at odds with your company philosophies and not be a good fit. You can also enhance your onboarding process by adding short videos of your managers or upper management speaking about the company and giving faces to names.
Effective training programs in the construction industry will help save time and money and reduce the risk of accidents. Training programs should be engaging, interactive, and follow industry guidelines. Construction training should also not stop early in the employee’s time with the company but rather be recurring to keep up with standards and encourage continuous improvement. If your project allows, having new employees connect with a veteran employee for any general questions they have can be helpful to the new employee and promote team building.
Psychology says that people are more motivated to work when they know and respect the people around them. Team building and bonding can organically happen on a construction site with shared tasks and experiences. In addition to what happens organically, your company should consider other measures to help your team get to know one another. This could look like having a quick team huddle each morning, team lunches at the end of a project, or an annual outing.
Construction can be an industry with high employee turnover due to physical demands, fast-moving projects, and competitive bonuses. Retention is an asset to your team since it offers the chance for longer-term relationship building, and veteran workers can instill company values. Further, retention can be more cost-effective in some cases since hiring is an expensive process. To retain the amazing team you’ve built, are you checking in with each member regularly and ensuring they have the support they need?
Advancement and Recognition Opportunities
Once you’ve built an admirable construction team, you should ensure they get the recognition they deserve. Employees are more likely to leave a company when they don’t feel seen or appreciated by management. Ideally, you should take the time to recognize employees who go above as frequently as you can throughout the month or project duration. Putting on an end-of-year award show ceremony can also be a way to encourage employees to improve over time.
Advancement opportunities are also crucial. Employees are also likely to leave if they don’t feel there is a chance for them to advance within the company. With consistent training and company loyalty, see if you can move employees up the ranks. This will also help keep your company values intact.
Connect with Thomas D. Wilson Consulting
The world of commercial construction is constantly changing. At Thomas D. Wilson Consulting, Inc., we’ve been through all the twists and turns the industry offers and are ready to consult on your projects. We are also construction scheduling experts and know programs like SmartPM™, Primavera™, and many more. Let’s talk about your next project!