A construction site is a big place, with a lot of people doing a lot of different things. Even if it’s just a plumber and an assistant on the job, they probably have to be in several different parts of their customer’s house. They probably also have to make a run to the hardware store at some point during the day.
All that activity requires coordination, and coordination requires constant communication. Technology can be a big help, with people sending photos and text back and forth to their phones or referring to a master schedule stored on the contractor’s website.
Try these three ideas to make your company’s communication stronger and more consistent — and don’t stop reading if you’re not a contractor! These ideas can be beneficial for employees in almost every line of business.
Maybe you’re using a simple Excel spreadsheet or the calendar app on your phone. Those can help you keep track of who’s where and what they’re doing. But is that enough? Reminding your staff and co-workers to take notes of what’s happening on the job is not exactly a reliable way of making sure everything is accounted for.
Take some time to figure out what needs to be recorded. Make a list of questions that need to be answered every time your team calls it a night, so you never have to redo your work from the day before. If you use a standard set of questions, it won’t be long before your crew is seeking out the information you want to know.
Another option is to buy or create a more elaborate only method of keeping track of your work, which can offer you a lot of features you might not think of yourself.
As we all know, what people believe sometimes overrides actual truth and facts. That’s why you want to have a single point of reference, so everyone makes decisions with the same goal in mind. If you’re the leader on the work site, that single point of reference is you, and what you have written down on your management tool.
The struggle against “silos,” where employees work on their own assignments and neglect to update people in other departments about what they’re doing, is a big one for every business. If everyone is reporting to one person, or putting their data in one location, everyone has a single source of truth, and that’s fundamental to good communication.
In the same way you want to stay updated on progress, you also want to stay updated on schedules. If Group A needs Group B to finish a task before Group A can continue its work, you need to know if the two groups are meeting with one another to stay in synch, or if things need to be reorganized to keep everyone on a steady pace.
Combined schedules can also tell you at a glance if there are too many meetings eating up valuable work time, or not enough (that “silo” effect).
How are you getting your coworkers to communicate? Let me know in the comments.
The Mutual Understanding blog and Hastings Mutual videos are made available for educational purposes only. The information referred to is not an official company statement, corporate policy, or offer of coverage. Refer to your insurance policy for specific coverage. There is no representation as to the accuracy or completeness of any information found by following any link on this site. Please contact your local independent insurance agent with further questions and for more details on any insurance policy-related information you read here.
© 2021 Hastings Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.
Hastings Mutual Insurance Company
404 E. Woodlawn Ave.
Hastings, MI 49058
8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. (EST)