One of the biggest issues facing the construction industry in 2021 is the lack of skilled labourers. As the world shifts back to normal in the wake of the covid 19 pandemic, work will far outstrip the workers’ ability to complete the work.
What does this mean going forward? With the current landscape looking to be at this level for a few more years yet, it is only natural to think that companies will be more selective of their work due to lack of skilled labour.
Streamlining processes to ensure timely payments and efficient working processes can help strengthen relationships between subcontractors in the construction industry. The importance of solidifying relationships when skilled labour is at an all-time low means that those subcontractors who rely on on-time payments to pay staff and suppliers can do so. At the same time, they consider the next job they are looking at taking on board.
With this in mind, being able to streamline your working processes puts you at an advantage over other companies despite the low uptake in skilled labour to put your construction company as one of the leaders in your field.
Document management isn’t a trivial thing. As contractors transition from pen and paper to digital, paperless operating environments, they have discovered various document management software for construction, some more sophisticated than others. Locating the right documents at the right time to aid in carrying out plans or rethinking designs on the spot is vital to help you keep the work moving along so you don’t lose time or focus.
A centralised depository can assist team members and other subcontractors in identifying the documents they need, easily see revisions and alterations, upload changes from paper documents on the go with ease. A cloud-based management system can be accessed on the go via mobile, allowing you to keep up to date both in the office or on-site.
Health and Safety
Make certain that your construction site and workers are weatherproofed. This will allow you to avoid harsh working conditions that may result in injuries and impede productivity on the job site. Essentially, take appropriate safety precautions to reduce the risk of injury. To reduce the risk of injuries, machinery and equipment at your site should be properly maintained and used by qualified professionals.
Use durable and strong materials in addition to these approaches. Always ensure the well-being of your workforce. This way, you can avoid problems that could jeopardise your construction process. It would be best to make this a priority to help you streamline your working day and allow yourself to hit deadlines without putting anyone’s health and safety at risk when on site. Coordinating the day to day tasks efficiently can help you keep on task and push through to reduce wasted time and wasted money.
How much time do you spend in meetings? Planned or unplanned? Meetings can take up a lot of time, especially if they are unproductive. Avoid scheduling meetings that can be conducted via email. Look for alternative ways to discuss any issues or concerns without pulling multiple people into meetings, reducing your efficiency and prolonging the work that needs to be done.
Treating your construction company like a well-oiled machine means all employees will have a part to play regardless of what that role is. Each person in the company needs to be fully trained in their job role to allow you to depend on them as you need to.
Delegation is an effective efficiency tool. Allowing your staff input into vital tasks, they are fully qualified for. Allowing them the chance to speak up for what they think is best and know you trust them to carry out their work without being micromanaged can increase employee satisfaction and efficiency and free up your time to take care of the work that needs your explicit attention.
Identify Areas That Do Not Work
Without a doubt, there are many different processes involved within the construction industry. Identify what is and isn’t working within your company and fix it. It could be as simple as changing your phone to VoIP (voice over internet protocol), which is a great way to reduce costs and improve productivity.
Do you have a website, and is it answering those questions that can tie up phone lines and prevent your staff from doing their jobs? If you find you are constantly answering the same quests, add an FAQ section on your website or consider using a chatbot. AI chatbots can be programmed to answer easy queries and respond to questions asked. Once the chat escalates, it can be directed to a member of your staff who can answer what your chatbot can’t.
Are you finding yourself wasting time chasing up plans or collaboration? Then utilising software that can allow you an easier way to work with other team members, subcontractors etc., such as Google Drive, Asana or Trello, can assist you in reducing any loss of efficiency and implement easier ways to work.
Respect Your Time
Construction work is intense and demanding on both your time, your mind and your ability to make things happen to quite often strict deadlines. You cannot be productive or run an efficient construction company if you are pulling yourself in multiple different directions. Learn to respect your time. Delegate when needed and say no to demands that aren’t in keeping with the task at hand or will distract the work you are doing.
With the signs pointing towards work in the construction industry increasing to the point where contractors and subcontractors are unable to meet the demand, being able to work as efficiently as possible will put you ahead of the competition regardless of the size of your company. It isn’t about working harder, it is about working smarter. Taking the time to address how you can work more efficiently without overextending yourself or your employees will pay dividends in the long run.