The Importance of Communication in Construction Safety and Costs
When the productivity and safety of your employees are on the line, communication must be a top priority. In the construction industry, more than $177 billion is spent on issues that are created due to poor communication. According to a survey of 600 professionals, almost 35% of an employee’s time is spent fixing previous mistakes, finding missing data, solving problems, etc. So, is improved communication the answer? Let’s take a closer look.
Improved Communication Can Increase Productivity
In the same survey, the respondents claim that they spend up to five hours each week looking for missing data and five hours solving problems and issues among project stakeholders. Strong communication techniques can reduce this lost time by ensuring everyone is on the same page, knowing where all data and materials are available, and providing immediate discussion rather than wait for results.
The Right Tools are Key
It isn’t enough to say that communication needs to improve. Instead, it means that you need to find the right tools to keep the communication streamlined and effective. For example, email is a simple way to provide a vast amount of information quickly and allows the other team members to refer back to it if needed. However, in construction, workers are not behind a computer all day checking emails. Plus, statistics show that 26% of employees think email is a productivity killer. For effective communication, it is important that you use the right tools that are accessible to a deskless workforce, such as text messaging.
Effective Communication Improves Safety
Fast and effective communication is critical in keeping employees safe. When you utilize the right resources, you have the opportunity to reach employees immediately, alerting them of danger. Additionally, when you have a large workforce, it is critical that everyone is aware of the project, any changes, issues, concerns, etc. The right communication tools make that distribution of information simple and immediate.
Ensure Everyone is Aware and Alert
When working on large construction projects, various decisions will affect a project’s timeline and create or prevent mistakes. These decisions are made every single day and when decisions are made that affect the workforce, information needs to be distributed immediately. Communication technology and systems are essential to ensure that this information is delivered in a consistent, effective, and fast way. Regular meetings and trainings may not be enough to help distribute this information and communication tools such as text messaging may be necessary.
To develop effective communication among your construction workforce, it is imperative that you find the right communication tools to best address your specific needs. This will not only improve the productivity of your entire team but it can cut down on costs, save time, and drastically improve the safety of everyone involved. Spend time researching your options and don’t make a decision on a whim. Remember that the safety of your workers and the success of your business are riding on this decision.