The construction industry is growing more competitive by the day. Recent statistics show that there are 98,610 businesses solely dedicated to construction constructor services in the UK as of 2023. That represents a 3.5% increase from the following year, and experts predict this upward trend will continue. So, if you want to break into the industry or thrive, be prepared to ward off stiff competition. You might also have to deal with highly complicated legal requirements, skills shortages, high material costs, cashflow challenges, and an ageing workforce, among other issues. But the following tips can help you turn your construction business into a success story, regardless of the challenges.
- Get proper licensing and permits
Start on the right foot by acquiring all the permits, licenses, and certifications you need. This move is important if you want to avoid drowning in muddy and expensive legal waters while building the credibility your business needs. Being properly licensed can also do your company a lot of financial good, as you can take on almost any construction project you qualify for. You’ll also be able to take out larger business loans and even get tax reliefs, depending on your location. So, take the time to check out what permits and licenses your business needs to have and get them.
- Get the tools and apps your business needs
Much of the business landscape has changed from a decade ago, as smart tech solutions take over – and that includes the construction industry. You want to be a step ahead of your competitors in the way you deliver your services to your clients, and assembling the right tools, software, and apps can help you. For example, your business can benefit from software solutions like BuildOps, designed to handle almost anything, from the field to the office. The right tool should make it easier to make reports, track projects, provide quotes or invoices, and streamline your dispatch. Many tools and software solutions are available, so do some research to identify which ones will directly improve your operations.
- Decide on your marketing strategy
A well-thought-through marketing strategy is critical for landing more clients and thriving in the industry. If you’re a new constructor, splashing cash on expensive ad campaigns might be too financially draining. Instead, focus on cheaper yet effective marketing options like creating a solid website, taking advantage of social media, finding ways to build online traffic, and using word-of-mouth tactics. Taking your business marketing efforts online is particularly more effective, and you can grow the visibility your services need without spending huge sums of money.
- Build your network
A strong professional network can be the difference between attracting new clients often and struggling. Surrounding your company with a reliable network can help you find out early about new opportunities and connect with potential clients ahead of your competitors. Building a solid network can also keep you up-to-date with the latest and most relevant industry news, innovations, and opportunities.
So, how can you build a business network? Attend relevant events related to your industry. But don’t just attend; find ways to reach out to other contracting professionals and businesses in the field. For example, you can connect with suppliers of construction materials and real estate agents. You can also find groups or associations online dedicated to construction.
- Assemble the right talent
Admittedly, the UK is experiencing a huge shortage of talent and skills, but you can still surround yourself with a solid team. Generally, construction jobs are in high demand, as labour shortages show no signs of easing. Your ability to address the current dwindling candidate market and take the right measures to get ahead of the competition will ensure that you hire the best talent.
Start by identifying the skills gap your business faces and create job postings for them. But be sure to post your openings only in the right places like, job fairs, schools, colleges, and online recruitment platforms. Next, promote your company’s unique offerings to lure the best talent. For example, if your business uses modern techniques and equipment and has some attractive employee perks, promote them in your job postings.
- Be financially astute
Like any other business, how you manage your finances can make or break you. Unfortunately, many construction constructors struggle when it comes to the financial side of their businesses. For example, they don’t invoice for completed work, fail to follow up on unpaid invoices, cannot bargain with suppliers, and some don’t even have financial teams.
These can cause cash flow issues, and the last thing you want to deal with is poor cash flow, as that can sink your business faster than any other business challenge. Your goal is to ensure that money coming into your company at the end of the day exceeds what is flowing out.