How Your Contracting Business Can Keep Employees During a Crisis

The construction industry is feeling uniquely squeezed during this pandemic. First, there already weren’t enough skilled workers to complete the jobs on the docket. Second, construction has been deemed an essential service in many states, so work continues. Third, millions of people are avoiding work out of fear for their lives and their loved ones. How does one keep good employees in this kind of environment? Here are five things you need to do to make sure that you’re less likely to be searching for labor during a crisis.

  1. Communicate with Employees

If you’re listening to what millions of people have been saying throughout this crisis, you’ll notice that the most common thread is fear. People are missing information, wish they had more, and worried about what the future holds. More than 10 million people in the United States have filed for unemployment in just the last few weeks. One of the best things that you can do for your employees is to continue to communicate with them throughout a crisis. Make sure that you spend more time listening than talking. Figuring out where they are at and what you can do to make them feel more secure will go a long way toward ensuring that they will remain loyal to your company.

  1. Avoid Major Cutbacks on Income or Benefits

In some cases, you will have no choice but to make tough decisions about how many employees you have, how much you pay them, or other benefits that you offer. However, the way that you present this to your employees can have significantly negative effects on their interest in staying with the company. If you don’t have to cut back, now is an excellent time to wait. Ensuring a steady cash flow is the best way for businesses to keep paying for employees during an economic downturn. If you can provide this stability for your employees, they will be much less likely to leave.

  1. Ensure Worker Safety

Millions of people are now out of a job, but millions more are working in essential industries where their protection in a time of crisis isn’t guaranteed. You’ve probably read reports of people working in healthcare settings and grocery stores without the ability to wash their hands or protect against contact from others. Taking steps to ensure the safety of your workers will make them more comfortable continuing to come to work while you are still doing projects. This includes providing personal protective equipment, practicing social distancing, and allowing people to stay home risk-free when they are sick.

  1. Keep Incentives Reasonable

While you are still expected to continue working on projects, it’s tempting to do whatever you can to avoid losing great employees or subcontractors. But if this crisis leads to an economic downturn as it seems, you need to ensure that everything you offer is within your grasp. The last thing that you want to do is present people with extensive paid time off, opportunities to go to conferences, or a higher income if you’re not sure you will be able to provide it. Instead, focus on the things that your employees need most in the moment and work on ways to guarantee it through the crisis.

  1. Work on Maintaining a Solvent Business

Although people may leave a business at any time and for a variety of reasons, they are much more likely to bail if they think the company is about to go belly-up. During a crisis that triggers a recession, there will probably be a lot of businesses that are not able to keep operating. Your employees are counting on you to make sure that your contracting business is not one of them. Investing your time into protecting your cash flow, keeping your bills manageable, and finding reliable sources of income will give your employees a company to continue working for.

Keeping employees while you’re trying to battle the wolves at the door is tricky. Having a steady contracting business can help. To learn more, contact CSLS today!