When your business is construction, you’ll know that it’s vital you recruit the right people – your reputation and other people’s safety depends on it. Construction is a competitive business and to stay competitive you’ll need dependable workers with the right mix of skills and a sound work ethic.
Whether you’re recruiting one person for a small job or a whole team for a large- scale project, it’s good practice to have a sound construction recruitment policy. A recruitment checklist is just part of this.
You have a checklist for all your projects, right? And recruitment is just another project that you need to succeed.
So, what’s on the recruitment checklist?
To get the best, you have to be the best. If you’re an employer of choice, you’ll be able to take your pick of the top workers. If you’re good to work for, don’t be shy about it. Make sure that your online presence (website, social media etc) tells a prospective jobholder the story of why they should apply. Employers of choice focus on:
Tell your story. Attract the best candidates. If you have awards, show them off. Build your employer brand and be as magnetic as possible.
You know who you want to recruit, yes? We’re not just talking about skills and experience. Who is the ideal fit for the role, and for your business? Maybe you just need a temporary worker but if you’re looking longer term, you might want to look for talent that can go further, whom you can develop into fantastic project managers and team leaders. Personal characteristics are as important as skills and experience.
Before you even advertise for the role, make sure that you create a best-practice shortlisting process. It’ll save you time and will help choose the most suitable candidates from a big pool of applicants. It’ll also help you be consistent and fair, which means you’ll demonstrate an unprejudiced attitude to recruitment. A good short listing policy includes:
If you’ve decided that you’d like to interview candidates scoring over 6, then, using this scorecard, you’d invite candidates D and E.
Often the best workers already have a job, so if you want to poach them (naughty!) you have to be open 24/7 for them to contact you. Be easy to find. Use digital resources to create a 24-hour hotline. Use technology. Digital methodologies like our Job Today app (oops, quick plug) have revolutionised how your competitors recruit and how people look for a job. It’ll also open up a new pool of talent for you – qualified, experienced workers in the localities you need. The right tech will help you find each other.
The construction industry has serious skills shortages in specialist areas. Looking in the same old talent pool just won’t cut it anymore. To be truly competitive, make sure you welcome diversity. It’s not just good for skills gaps, it’s good for business (and, hey, it’s good for society, too). The benefits of a diverse workforce have been proven. If you’re diversity-positive, you’ll:
A well-written job post will attract the right people. Clarity is key. Know what you’re recruiting for. If you’re recruiting for a specialist role, be specific because you want to attract the real specialists, not the generalists who are taking a chance.
Don’t forget to make the post easy to read. Short sentences, bullet points and active tenses make it scanable, and use keywords that’ll attract the eye of the right candidates. A logical structure might look like:
You’ve advertised, you’ve applied your shortlisting process and now you’re at the interview stage. What kind of questions should you ask? Use behavioural or situational questions that relate to the job profile. Behavioural and situational questions tell you how the candidate works, how they might fit in your culture, how they might cope with challenges or what are their attitudes to important issues like safety and quality.
Some examples for a general labourer:
Now you’ve decide who’s right for the job, it’s important that you follow up their references. Here’s how:
If you’ve put the work in to create a holistic recruitment checklist, you’ve just increased your chance of recruiting top quality staff. Congratulations!