Posts tagged Construction
7 Solid LinkedIn Tips for Construction Company Owners

LinkedIn LogoOkay, you’ve been invited to join LinkedIn. You may have even built out your profile and company page. “Now what?” you may be asking. Here are seven specific tips on how construction company owners can use LinkedIn to to their benefit.

1. Finding Top Talent

Just like any other business, successful construction companies rely on hiring and retaining top talent. LinkedIn has several tools that you can use to find top talent and attract them to your firm, including:

  • LinkedIn Jobs – where you can post and advertise the positions you are trying to fill. There is a small fee based on your location and the number of jobs you are posting and LinkedIn is currently offering a 10 applicant guarantee.
  • People Search – helps you identify the individuals who have the skills and expertise that you are looking for so you can actively recruit them.
  • People / Company search – can help you identify recruiters and staffing companies who specialize in filling jobs in the construction industry.

2. Networking with Other Construction Company Owners

Be a business owner can be lonely. You are expected to have all of the answers and you may feel like you have very few people to turn to that understand the challenges you face in your business. Building a network or peer group of other construction company owners is a great way to get the advice and support you need to grow your business.

One way to identify and connect with other construction business owners on LinkedIn is to do a people search for owners of companies similar to yours. You can use the Title, Location, and Industry fields in Advanced Search to find them. If you have a premium account, you can also search by company size.

Another option is to identify LinkedIn groups that include construction company owners. Start by searching for groups in your location or region. Many LinkedIn groups also have local, in person events, so look for those if you prefer to meet people face-to-face.

3. Finding Subcontractors and Suppliers

You can also use LinkedIn to search for subcontractors and suppliers. LinkedIn can help you save time on your vetting process by 1) letting you see the recommendations they have received and 2) letting you know if you share any connections with that potential partner – connections who may be able to give you some insight or provide you with an introduction.

4. Connecting with Decision Makers and Influencers

Do you need to add more decision makers and/or influencers to your network? Using LinkedIn you can identify City Council Members, members of your local Economic Development Board, architects, etc., and begin building a relationship with them.

5. Staying Top of Mind

More often than not, people don’t have a need for our services, or know someone else who does, at the exact time we meet them. The key to being successful at networking and generating business through referrals is to follow up and maintain our “top of mind” status so that when a need to buy does arrive, our contacts remember to call us.

LinkedIn is a great tool for staying in touch with the members of our network. We can see what is going on in their world through their status updates – congratulating them on their successes and providing resources when they ask for help. We can connect members of our network for their mutual benefit. We can share stories and articles that are relevant to their business and industry. LinkedIn even provides a way for you to record notes and reminders (including how you met) for each of your contacts.

6. Build Relationships with Journalists

One of the ways people can learn about your company is through your PR efforts. Business owners who become trusted resources to journalists have a lot more success in the PR efforts than those who just constantly pitch their own company. Use LinkedIn to identify journalists who cover construction industry news and start using some of the ideas in the “Staying Top of Mind’ section above to build a relationship with them.

7. Finding Speakers for Your Events

Many construction business owners are also active in their industries associations, clubs, and networking groups. Many of these groups need speakers for their meetings and events. LinkedIn is a great way to find local subject matter experts to speak at your next event.

Do you have a tip for using LinkedIn in the construction industry that we missed? Leave a comment below.

Is Your Construction Accounting Software Costing You Money?

When home builders think about their favorite tools, they typically don’t think about their accounting software. Like your other tools, having the right accounting software package, one designed specifically for construction professionals, can help you make more money. Many construction companies start out with a general accounting software solution. It’s not made specifically for the construction industry, but it gets the job done. As the company grows, owners need more information to help them make good business decisions. This is the time when many companies begin to feel they spend more time getting the system to work than they do getting useful information out of it.

It’s not uncommon to outgrow your first (or second) accounting software system, but how do you know if you really need a new system or not? Here are 5 questions to help determine you determine if you need to upgrade your construction accounting software.

  1. Do you spend time keying the same data into different software systems (estimating, accounting, spreadsheets, etc.)?
  2. Once you win a job, how long does it take to create a job budget, purchase orders, a job schedule, and subcontracts?
  3. Do you struggle to keep bonding / WIP reports up to date?
  4. How quickly can you produce real-time, detailed, accurate job cost reports? How confident are you making key business decisions based on those reports?
  5. How much effort goes into tracking change orders? Is this a manual process handled outside of the accounting system?

If your answers to the questions above indicate that your software is costing rather than saving you time, it may be time to look for a construction specific software program. If you already have construction specific software, we may be able to help you get more out of it so you can spend more time completing projects.