A company’s early days are full of troubling circumstances at the best of times. Assessing market needs, making an impact with consumers, and stepping out of competitors’ shadows are all common areas of concern.
That said, starting a construction business is unlike starting any other. There are very specific challenges these firms have to overcome. While hard work is involved, the entrepreneurs who make progress here should enjoy the process and the fruits of their labors.
So, if you are starting a construction business, what are the things you should think about first? Read on to find out.
The Labor Shortage
Recruitment is always a challenge in business. The stakes are higher for those in construction, as highly specialized roles need to be filled. Supply does not always equal demand, either.
Unfortunately, the industry has been plagued by a worker shortage for years now. Overcoming the labor shortage will not be easy, but it is possible. Still, it would help if you prepared to fight hard for talent
Try to one day have an influential presence at your area’s construction and engineering jobs fairs. Optimize recruitment posts on job sites so that prospective candidates have a clear idea of what the job involves and what opportunities for progression are available. Make a point of appealing to women and other underrepresented groups in construction to widen the talent pool.
It is not just about the talent you onboard, either. You have to retain the skilled workers you bring onboard, too. The workforce in construction is typically older and ageing out of working age, so you need to source younger workers and give them a career over a prolonged period. Training and progression are non-negotiable musts, even for newer construction firms.
Cloud and Automation Technologies
The labor shortage is a significant hurdle for construction firms to overcome. However, technology can provide many comforting assurances for building businesses struggling to hang on. These innovations can temporarily help close workforce gaps and permanently boost productivity.
Those aspirations can only be realized if your new construction business utilizes the latest technology to its utmost potential. It can alleviate many burdens upon workers, de-stressing them from their roles and even helping them to enjoy them a little more.
Your business would greatly benefit from using the cloud-based management software for construction from Kahua. They offer a collaborative construction program to help you manage project costs, documents, and processes. Risks can also be reduced while teamwork is improved.
As construction businesses become increasingly complex, a construction time clock app for managers can be a great asset when starting a construction company. By using cloud and automation technologies to manage construction time, construction managers can save time and money that would have otherwise been lost on entering data manually. The construction time clock app provides access to employee records such as their hours worked, accrued overtime, etc., which can help managers make better labor cost estimates and reduce labor costs in the long run.
Automation also has its place in construction. Drones can be pre-programmed to survey work areas, while modular construction can take place off-site under the supervision of autonomous machines. Though you may not be able to afford all these innovations in the early days of your firm, eventually implementing them is a worthwhile goal to work towards.
Start-ups always need a helping hand to get going. Newer construction businesses need to follow suit, and you should set your sites on more than just tech-focused software experts.
Another way to try and combat the labor shortage is to work with contractors. These specialists should hopefully step in on projects where you are short-staffed and require their input. If you can build a solid rapport with contractors by paying them on time and being a delight to work with, they will come through for you regularly.
Curate a list of reputable suppliers who will benefit from your business. Build trust with them. Utilize efficient systems for paying them and conduct as many meetings as possible, whether in-person or remote. Learn their processes and spread the good word about their business. When these relationships deepen, everyone benefits.
Marketing experts can also build awareness of your construction business. Give them a clear idea of your brand and a solid brief for a robust campaign, and they will achieve remarkable results for you. Review examples of their past work to see if they are right for you.
Health and Safety
Health and safety are vital considerations for a business of any kind. However, construction has finer points that need to be considered.
After all, workers in this sector are frequently surrounded by hazardous tools and environments. Because their roles require labor-intensive efforts, they might also be more prone to suffering accidents and injuries than people in other professions.
There are many sub-sectors of health and safety that have to be carefully accounted for. These include, but are not limited to:
- Implementing procedures around fall prevention.
- Acknowledging phobias and other difficulties with confined spaces.
- Providing training and signs around equipment, machine, and tool safety.
- Serving reminders around breathing in toxic dust or chemical fumes.
- Providing PPE gear for all eligible workers.
Ensure that safety is the main priority when starting your construction business and research all the rules and regulations your firm must follow. Remember, health and safety are shared responsibilities, so everyone in your firm needs to comply with these standards and undergo sufficient training. Insurance coverage should help if anything goes wrong, too.