In recent years, a serious concern in the construction industry is the labor shortage. In fact, there might be some reading this article who think it’s been an issue for decades. The reality is, coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic, the construction industry is going to produce a tremendous number of new hires, some of which will never have swung a hammer or powered equipment in construction – and that’s a challenge as we onboard these newcomers to the industry.
According to Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC), “In 2021, construction companies will need to hire 430,000 more workers than they employed in 2020, according to an analysis of U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data released today by ABC.” Insurance claims from employees on the job with less than 12 months of experience make-up approximately 50% of the overall workers’ comp claims. On average, the overall cost for these claims is greater. It begs the question, “Are we prepared to onboard 430,000 newcomers to the industry?” Here are things to consider:
- Does your company have a formal onboarding process in place?
- How fast do your new employees become key contributors?
- Does your organization proactively build relationships with newly hired employees?
- How frequently are you engaging employees after the onboarding process for training and continuous contact?
In order to gain as much control over the new hire process, it’s important to have a consistent approach. Develop a plan, a process, routinely evaluate your process for effectiveness, and interview recently hired employees to see how impactful and effective the onboarding process was.