Modern Challenges Construction Workers Face — and How to Meet Them Head On
Written by Molly Peterson, AMAST Content
While there is a lot of good going on in the construction industry, we can all be doing better. Consider three areas in which the construction industry could improve — and three areas to evaluate in your current projects and practices. Change can start with you.
1. Skilled Labor
The construction industry is still recovering from the 2008 financial recession, when many skilled workers switched to more stable careers. In the following years, a lot of capital was funneled into the training of new workers. This cost projects both money and time. Low numbers of construction workers continues to be a problem for many companies, both skilled or unskilled. Industry stigma exacerbates this problem. While some enter engineering and construction by way of technical school, few universities have robust programs committed to molding the construction workers of tomorrow.
Our advice to anyone facing this hiring dilemma? Train your workers, treat them well, and make them want to stay with your brand. Invest in people as people, not as commodities. Keep learning and growing alongside your workers, and commit to always doing better. Learn can happen anytime, anywhere with the right mindset. The more you know, the more you can do, and the more you can do, the more in-demand your business will be. An unskilled laborer doesn’t need to always be unskilled. Utilize online resources and experienced networks to catch new hires up to speed and accelerate your business to higher profit margins.
It’s no secret that construction is one of the country’s most dangerous industries. Injury and death rates remain high, despite efforts to lower them through litigation, machinery manufacturing, and improved worker training programs. The danger factor affects not only workers already employed in the industry, but also those considering making construction a career. Many are turned away from the meaningful work of bringing buildings and communities to life by the relatively high possibility of accident in a given workday.
To improve safety concerns at your building sites, we recommend improving your communication practices. Make sure you have effective, responsive technology that won’t let you down. With so many pieces moving at the same time, it’s important for the whole team to know what’s happening onsite. When it comes to worker safety, the fewer surprises, the better. A constant growth mindset also plays a huge role in improving safety statistics. Take the time to ensure you and your workers know exactly how to operate new equipment. Repeatedly engage with new methods and techniques as a team. Encourage questions about both new and established operations for total clarity among the task force. Not only will you keep your workers safer, but you’ll find them working smarter, too.
Designers and workers must meet regulations to ensure that the buildings they construct are safe and sufficient. This is not always an easy task, especially with recent sustainability trends. Buyers want buildings that treat the planet well, last for a long time, and look good doing it. Technology has the potential to play a huge role in improving a firm’s ability to meet these demands. Construction lags behind other industries in terms of its technology integration. This could be for a number of reasons, from bureaucracy to tradition.
Our advice to those looking to improve productivity fast is to bring your company into the 21st century. The world is changing, and the world of innovation changes fast — but this change doesn’t have to be scary. Keep an open mind when considering new tech. Technology is invented to make life and work better, from the wheel to the lightbulb to the automobile. Inventions such as drones and modeling software will speed up build times and help to envision a project’s fruition. Online marketplaces like AMAST will help connect you to the materials you need from workers you can trust. An increase in technology will only lead to an increase in efficiency, which in turn will lead to an increase in profitability. Your projects will be completed faster, your structures will be built stronger, your workers will be safer, and you’ll have more money for your company’s pocket, so you can continue to invest in getting better and better.
Looking to improve your business’ sustainability, productivity, or profitability? AMAST can help.
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