We’ve written before about some ways your construction company can attract talent during a skilled labor shortage. These approaches are highly effective, but somewhat generalized. Here we’d like to add onto this important topic with some more industry-specific construction hiring strategies that can help you find and retain skilled workers.
Use these construction hiring strategies to ensure that you always have the manpower and skills on hand to accept contracts that come your way. It’s worth noting that while a few of these may necessitate more on-the-job training, that’s ultimately much less costly than turning down projects because you don’t have the labor to handle them.
Recruiting and Retaining Construction Workers
- Establish relationships with local technical schools and community colleges. They’re eager to help their graduates find jobs. You can offer job-shadowing, apprenticeships, or other opportunities to students, too; this lets you build relationships with young workers entering the job market soon and identify motivated, skilled individuals.
- Ask your current employees for referrals. Good workers often know other good workers. This can be a great shortcut to finding skilled labor and getting them in for an interview. It’s fairly common to offer employees a bonus if they refer someone you end up hiring.
- Hire people with skill adjacencies and related interests. While expertise in one specific area can be exceptionally valuable, also look for workers who possess related skill sets. These are people who will be able to fulfill different roles and grow with your company.
- Provide retention bonuses. Offer them upon project completion as an incentive to keep your workforce in place during a job; losing workers in the middle of a project can create all kinds of budgeting and scheduling problems. These are also helpful in recruiting new talent.
- Build a reputation for safety. Safety is a leading concern among construction workers and those looking to enter the industry. Develop a robust safety culture and make sure it comes across in all your brand and marketing collateral—and your interviews. A strong reputation for safety is one of the best ways to differentiate your construction company from the competition.
- Offer clear career paths. The best workers understand the concept of climbing the ladder, and doing so is a goal of theirs. Be explicit about how this process works at your company, and show people a path for career advancement. It’s also great if you offer professional development opportunities to your employees.