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Across all fields of construction, the industry is seeing a severe labor shortage during a time when the industry should be flourishing. The construction industry is one of few having consistent growth when it comes to number of jobs and contracts available, however the number of employees is quickly dwindling.

Below are a few approaches and areas on which industry professionals can focus their efforts to better attract new employees while also helping retain existing ones.

1. Paint a Clear Professional Path

If companies want their employees to stay long-term, they need to help employees see there is a path to their professional success. It’s widely known the younger generations entering the workforce are eager for a career that will enable them to grow in the company. Set those expectations early in the hiring process by telling them the different avenues their career could take with the business. Also, employers can better engage with staff by having a conversation with current employees to determine how they feel in their position and where they would want to see it grow.

2. Give Employees Access to Tools

Employees don’t just need access to construction tools; they also need training tools. Good employees will want to constantly strive to build their skillsets. Help them do this by giving employees access to proper training tools. This could be training the business has put together internally or external training that is realistic for employees to attend. Training doesn’t just have to take place in a classroom setting; nowadays, training can be set up online. For example, participating in industry webinars can be a less time-consuming and more cost-effective away to receive training from knowledgeable companies throughout the industry and across the globe.

3. Be Open and Honest

Transparency is key with new hires and existing employees. Professionals shouldn’t mislead either party into thinking the business is going in one direction or another. Being direct about how a new employee will fit into the mold and how the responsibilities of his role will contribute to the business is essential. This also goes for the corporate culture at the company. Sharing the type of atmosphere at the business and gauging the potential hire’s mindset on the importance of company culture will help businesses better determine the right individual for the job.

4. Get Involved in the Community

Companies should have an active presence in their communities for multiple reasons. Not only does it keep the business engaged with those living in the area to help cultivate a positive reputation, but it also makes people aware that there is an organization in their area that is potentially hiring. Those living in the area might not know about all the local companies, so an active presence is key for attracting new talent to the business.

5. Involve Current Employees

There are no better recruiters for a company than those who already work for it. Businesses should involve their existing employees to act as ambassadors for the company. Businesses can even offer employees a referral program, meaning they could receive a bonus or some other benefit if they recommend someone who is hired.

Using salespeople in the company is also a smart move. Take advantage of their biggest talent and send them to networking events and job fairs to better position the company among the job seeker pool. Companies should also take a look at their existing employees and where they came from. Was there a platform that brought in more than others? Companies should review previous efforts to see what was most successful and then optimize that strategy

Businesses need to reevaluate their approach to recruiting and retaining employees. The industry has changed and the ways companies can reach job seekers has changed too. With the current shortage, it doesn’t hurt to try out some new techniques to determine whether they produce results.

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