How to recruit and retain top talent in construction sector

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Hiring top talent in the construction sector has never been an easy task.  It consumes time and money to recruit and hire new construction employees. It is therefore more critical to retain and attract strong talent to your organization.

Clearly, retention of employees must be a goal for which strategies are developed, and those strategies begin with the recruitment phase.

Here are 6 ways of recruiting and retaining top talent in the construction industry

1. Broaden Your Recruitment Efforts
You have to take a more active role in finding candidates. And that means going after passive candidates (those already working). Get referrals and introductions from people you trust; search through social media sites such as LinkedIn and career-specific sites and blogs. “Poaching” is pretty common practice these days, especially when many positions go unfilled because of the lack of qualified candidates.

2. Make Personality and Attitude Your Top Priority
When you focus the job description and your interview questions solely on the candidate’s skill set and work experience, you are leaving out the key ingredient – cultural fit. Remember, you can always enhance skills through training. There is no training program that will change a personality. Given that the individual has been employed in the career field, you can assume that s/he has some skills. Your job now is to ask those questions that reveal personality and attitude.

3. Ensure that the Right People are Applying for the Position
Millennials are the largest job-seeking group today. And Millennials are “plugged in” all the time. Before they send you a resume, they will be checking you out online. Be certain that your corporate culture is well-defined on your website. Be certain that all of your social media pages are continually updated with information about you and your employees, as well as company activities.

Here’s the thing about Millennials – they want authenticity and they want to work for companies that take social responsibility by giving back to their communities. They are not lazy, but they do want to be assessed on what they accomplish rather than how many hours they are at their desks.

4. Make the Recruitment Process a Multi-Step One
The process may begin with reviewing applicant paperwork. Understand, however, that most applicants have had professional assistance in the preparation of those compelling cover letters and resumes, so do not think that you will learn a lot from them. And one or two interviews, which are largely contrived situations anyway, will not give either you or a candidate a “feel” for one another. In addition to those phone and face-to-face interviews, take the time to meet for lunch or dinner. Invite others from the team or department to join you. These situations reveal much more.

5. Be honest about your organization
It will be crucial for you to be honest with the candidate about the company, its visions, its expectations, and its climate. Are you a more contemporary “project-based” organization or are you still steeped in an “hours-on-the-job” focus. What leadership style characterizes your company? What community-based activities does the company support? Does the company value socializing and play as a way to develop teamwork? Are employees intimately involved in developing shared goals and visions? Give examples of all of these things to prove your authenticity.

6. Close the Deal Quickly
If you have found who you believe to be the best “fit,” do not waste any time. Research shows that really great candidates are usually employed within two-three weeks of the beginning of their job searches. And if you have to offer a bit more in salary or benefits, do it. It will be far more expensive to be declined and to have to begin again, perhaps settling for second-best this next round. The old attitude of “let them stew a bit” is archaic and, frankly, stupid in this job environment.

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