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There’s a common perception that construction jobs are physical, muddy and manual. While it’s true there are plenty of hands-on jobs in the industry, this image no longer matches the reality of many modern construction or mining sites. Both industries are booming with plenty of new and rewarding careers, thanks to the ever-evolving use of technology.

Unfortunately, many don’t consider entering the field as they’re unaware of these exciting changes taking place. With the sector experiencing a 15.5 per cent decline in available job candidates, it’s up to every business to build awareness of innovation and attract new talent.  

Making vacant positions or career opportunities more attractive to combat preconceived notions of jobs can help. Here’s how!

  1. Is that an Excavator or a Flight Deck? 

Equipment manufacturers have innovated in a big way, adding exciting bells and whistles that improve the ways machines get the job done, as well as the operator’s comfort. These days, stepping into a modern excavator is more like climbing into a flight deck – an unexpectedly comfortable craft with supportive seats, a control for everything, including the climate. Not only does this equipment look sleek and shiny, but technology in the machines helps operators improve productivity and efficiency to get the job done more efficiently. Technologically advanced equipment is a great recruitment tool for those who would traditionally get their hands dirty on a job site and for people interested in working outside in the field instead of traditional office spaces.

  1. Attracting the Video Game Generation

Millennials, and even younger generations, are now entering the workforce. They’ve grown up looking at screens, using smartphones and playing mobile and video games. They’re a connected generation and they’re bringing these skills and interests to the workplace who are quickly becoming an influential presence in all businesses. By 2025, 75 per cent of the workforce will be made up of millennials. Implementing interactive technology in your workplace can be a big selling point for younger employees. Marketing job sites or training programs that use things like virtual or augmented reality, drones and Internet of Things connected wearables will help to capture younger talent’s interest.

  1. Getting Hands-on with Data

Forward-thinking companies are adopting technology like GPS tracking and advanced analytics. This reduces time spent on manual paperwork, but also opens up opportunities for people who want to get stuck into the data and help to transform day-to-day operations. New positions are available for fleet managers, project managers, safety managers and IT professionals. These jobs are also becoming increasingly tech-enabled as construction companies look to data analysis to improve operations and profits. The growing industry trend of 3-D model-based processing, or BIM (Building Information Modelling), is driving demand for people in both the office and the field who are familiar with these new technologies. There is a real need for construction companies to raise awareness of these non-physical jobs that are just as critical to a company’s success. 

Embrace the New

To attract a new generation of construction workers, businesses must implement and market the use of innovative technology that makes job sites more efficient, rewarding and enjoyable places to work. Young people now entering the workforce expect to use the same technology that they’re accustomed to in their everyday lives. Providing easy access to information and seamless digital experiences isn’t only a nice-to-have – it’s a necessity.

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James French is a Australasian Solutions Specialist, CE at Teletrac Navman.

James French is Australasian Solution Specialist for the construction industry at Teletrac Navman. James has worked for more than 20 years in the construction industry and shares his expert knowledge and passion for GPS asset tracking with construction businesses to fulfill their needs.