We all know there’s a labor shortage in construction. But did you know that your company processes and systems, or the lack thereof, could play into your hiring difficulties? Good employees are looking for companies that are organized, use technology to their advantage, and help them feel useful. If you’re still using outdated software and systems, you could be turning away future star employees.
Almost one-third of senior leaders cite finding talent as their most significant managerial challenge. The problem isn’t so much finding workers (although that may seem to be the challenge right now), it’s finding quality workers. Workers you can trust and that have the skills your company needs.
As top talent becomes scarcer, the best companies will cherry-pick the best workers. But you won’t even be in the running if your systems aren’t up to date. Employees are choosing companies with the best systems because they provide them with a feeling of security, reduce stress, make them feel productive, and provide professional development.
Feeling of security
Job seekers want to know their new job is secure, that it won’t be cut, and that they are protected from layoffs and other events that might affect their employment. If the position provides a key role in the company’s business processes, workers are more likely to feel that their work is important to the company and that their job is secure.
If company systems are disorganized or are still heavily reliant on paper, it can be frustrating for new employees, especially younger workers who are more comfortable with technology. If your company is slow to adopt technological advancements, your pool of potential workers may be smaller. Top producers will be attracted to companies with better organizational systems.
Learning a new job is stressful enough. When it’s paired with learning unproductive processes, it can increase the stress felt by new workers. This may lead them to make a hasty exit and look for greener pastures.
Before bringing in new workers, it pays to assess your existing processes, discovers why you do things the way you do, and make changes to improve efficiency. This will reduce the stress felt by your existing employees, as well as those you are hiring.
Streamlined company systems and processes help workers perform their jobs in the most efficient way possible. There are no extra steps or unnecessary workarounds, saving employees time so they can concentrate on more important tasks. By reducing extraneous or duplicative processes and harnessing the power of technology, work will be completed more efficiently and productively.
New employees can learn a lot from the companies they work for. If your company uses effective company systems that take advantage of technology and other efficiencies, new workers learn how to implement these processes and can use this knowledge throughout their professional careers.
What does a great company system look like?
We all know what a poor company system feels like, but how can you identify if your system is truly good enough? Here are some characteristics of a good business system:
- The system is designed with the end customer in mind. Does it help you provide better service to your customers and vendors?
- It represents the best-known way of doing something. Is it the best you can do, or could the process be improved?
- It has one primary purpose. What is the objective of the system, and does it help you meet your company objectives?
- The system has an owner. Who is accountable for and reports on system results?
- It is as simple as possible, written down, understood by employees, and repeatable.
- Results are measured against performance standards. Improvement requires measurement. Can the results be quantified?
- You provide ongoing feedback to employees on the system’s performance, and workers are recognized for good results. You celebrate victories and give frequent feedback.
- Waste is reduced, including bottlenecks, inefficiencies, and rework.
If your systems aren’t matching up with these characteristics, then you probably have some work to do. Meet with your team, document your current systems, and see what you can do together to improve them. Even incremental change is better than keeping the status quo.
To hire the best employees, you need the best business systems. If you’re still relying on paper and analog systems, it’s time to upgrade. Premier Software can help you streamline and digitize your project management and accounting processes, making your company more attractive to the best candidates.
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Dawn Killough is a construction writer with over 20 years of experience with construction payments, from the perspectives of subcontractors and general contractors. Dawn has held roles such as a staff accountant, green building advisor, project assistant, and contract administrator. Her work for general contractors, design firms, and subcontractors has even led to the publication of blogs on several construction tech websites and her book, Green Building Design 101.