It’s no secret that companies are facing generational gaps within their workforce, inside and outside of the construction industry. It is important to understand this challenge and promote ways for young professionals to continue developing into high-performing employees and leaders. Retaining the younger generation entering the workforce can be done effectively and without making a large financial investment.
RFIs do not have to be such a time-consuming and expensive part of construction. With the right tools, software and implementation, RFI processes can be streamlined and their associated costs can be lowered.
State and local governments throughout the country have taken a number of actions within the last five years to change construction labor policy. Some of these changes have expanded opportunities for merit shop contractors to compete for projects, while others have served to limit competition from contractors that are not signatories to collective bargaining agreements. One thing many of these new statutes and ordinances have in common is exposure to legal challenges from those unhappy with the changes.
The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has issued the most sweeping changes to its union election procedures in more than 50 years. These changes are designed to dramatically speed up elections and will clearly work to the advantage of union organizers. Also expected soon is a new standard for “joint employer” status and a new “blacklisting” regulation from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), as well as significant anti-business changes to rules governing overtime exemptions for “white collar” employees.
For most contractors, regardless of size, litigation is an unfortunate fact of life. The key to effectively dealing with litigation is to understand the process, know what the company should and should not do, and make certain it is aligned with the right attorney, insurance broker and insurance company.
Construction company owners and financial executives face one issue every day: when to account for job costs as costs associated with a particular job versus as fixed assets. Because most contractors use the percentage-of-completion method in recognizing revenue and monitor the progress of jobs based on actual costs incurred, the accumulation of job costs is critical.
While construction projects attached to companies like Facebook, Google and Apple capture headlines, construction is hardly relegated to tech giants. During the past year, businesses throughout Silicon Valley have been driving up demand for new office space as they expand in the context of flourishing capital markets and improving demand for new products.
The industrial sector is rated as the most promising property type for investment and development potential this year. Supply has yet to meet demand, which has been rising since 2010. The apartment sector ranks second, with moderately priced units generating far more interest than high-end units. Hotels are rated third, as prospects for liquidity in the hospitality sector are expected to shape up nicely in 2015.
2014 marked Brasfield & Gorrie’s 50th anniversary, and the company made it count by refining its core values and purpose statement to show a sincere commitment to all the things that take a contractor from good to great: safety, quality, innovation, teamwork, diversity and community service. The firm also kicked off or completed some impressive projects, including the new Atlanta Braves ballpark, College Football Hall of Fame and MetLife’s corporate headquarters. In honor of these achievements and contributions to the construction industry—plus a longstanding commitment to the merit shop philosophy—Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) named Brasfield & Gorrie its 2014 Contractor of the Year.
For contractors small and large, technology is inseparable from doing business. From the moment a worker arrives on the jobsite, he’s relying on handheld devices and mobile tablets for communication, intuitive software and PDFs for updating project details and relaying them to the whole project team, voice command apps for reporting conflicts and safety issues, and cameras for envisioning the entire project along the way. The future will call for not just one piece of essential technology, but rather, several pieces—all leading construction teams closer to true collaboration and the ability to work from a universal “bible” of information.