February 14, 2023

How to prevent employee turnover on your construction site

Why keeping your workforce engaged keeps them on board.

Labor as a resource continues to be one of the biggest challenges to commercial construction industries, largely due to a high turnover rate. Especially considering how fluid the job environment is, workers can move from project to project sometimes daily. Not to mention the already-limited number of available workers. Competition is fierce, and your efforts to keep your employees engaged could be lost by offers for even $1 more an hour.

The labor shortage and high demand for projects makes turnover a constant threat, but there are ways to better engage the workforce to ensure you end your projects on time, under budget and with few safety incidents.

Why now is the time to prioritize team engagement:

The construction workforce is aging, and younger employees have the highest turnover risk. On average, turnover rate in the construction industry hovers around 21.4% with employees 24 or younger reaching about 64%.  

Companies know that turnover is a problem and studies have shown that increased injuries are linked to high turnover. Low team engagement also results in reduced quality and the inability to execute on jobs, risking potentially losing your backlog. With that comes more losses such as construction defect claims, poor quality work, actual injuries on the job and the reputational risk of not being hired by the owner again.

Successfully engaging your craft-level workers will elevate your company above the rest. A better-engaged workforce leads to a better reputation, lower losses and ultimately helps you make more money and be more competitive.

The more engagement elements you introduce into your job site, the more likely your team will achieve a higher quality of work, done on schedule.

The more engagement elements you introduce into your job site, the more likely your team will achieve a higher quality of work, done on schedule.

The way to engage is through communication and education.

There’s a lot to be said for familiarity within a team or crew on the job site. Personally knowing the people on the crew leads to more effective training and increased communication, and better camaraderie helps leaders know who has the right skills for the right tasks.

MindForge makes it faster and more efficient for foremen and superintendents to send information out to all of their employees. This allows you to have increased touchpoints and to further communicate with your workforce by clearly setting expectations, providing opportunities for your team to share knowledge, recognize contributions, celebrate success, nurture your organizational values and provide a more in-depth opportunity for career growth.

MindForge has also introduced message boards through the new Bulletin Board feature, which allows your workers to ask questions, send responses and actually engage with their management teams. This provides a portal allowing companies to bring the individual craft worker into a high-performing culture that continues to push high-performing teams.

Using tech to create a central space for your company culture will retain employees longer. They now will feel like they are part of a team and have a critical role with their tasks and overall project.

Using tech to create a central space for your company culture will retain employees longer. They now will feel like they are part of a team and have a critical role with their tasks and overall project.

Tips to Engage your employees and reduce turnover.

Train managers on how to be great leaders. 

To reduce turnover, we must recognize the importance of great leadership. Learning to become an effective leader is a skill that requires consistent effort and practice - such as inquiry into situations, showing appreciation for employees' work contributions, and resolving conflict in thoughtful ways. Furthermore, mastering one's emotions can create environments where team members feel respected while actively engaged at their workplace.

Companies often transition skilled workers into leadership roles, but with that promotion comes the need to learn how to lead a team successfully. Investing in quality training programs can ensure you create leaders who empower and motivate their employees rather than drive them away. It's a win-win for employee retention and business success - so consider taking advantage of hands-on classroom courses and self-paced digital learning materials.


Communicate your company values. 

Company values are the bedrock from which you can build a great work environment - a place people will want to stay. A culture where employees thrive and feel supported, encouraged, and respected.

Ensure that your culture is crystal clear from the get-go. Communicate company values not just to employees but also subcontractors, as they can also shape how everyone works together in a positive and meaningful way.

Be disciplined in how you hire and manage by your values because how you abide by your values and execute on your values sets you apart from other employers and ultimately creates a culture that encourages employees to stay with you.


  • Make sure your company values are clearly defined, and you fully understand the work behaviors they intend to drive. 
  • Each week, send a communication to field crews that describe a value. Tell a story about how someone lived up to the value in your workplace. 

Continually provide your employees with knowledge. 

Studies suggest that as much as 90 percent of information is forgotten within 30 days, and 70 percent of that loss happens within one day. So, it is not only important to teach new knowledge but also reinforce knowledge your employees already have. 

By investing in your team's knowledge, you can help foster a sense of confidence and career growth. As crew members stay up-to-date on safety protocols, craft skills, leadership strategies, and site specifics, they feel empowered to do great work - leading to higher employee retention over time.

That challenge is transferring knowledge can be time-consuming and expensive. With today's technology, it doesn't have to be. 

Transferring knowledge can be as simple as pulling out your smartphone and capturing video of a process or a spoken message. Consider how people today learn on social media - the video doesn't have to be slick - just relevant and precise.

Companies who refrain from investing in training for their employees risk creating a cycle of diminishing returns. Without development initiatives, staff may feel disengaged and undervalued - leading to high churn rates as they look elsewhere for opportunities that better meet their needs. To break this discouraging spiral, employers must make an effort to provide ongoing learning and growth possibilities – opening the door towards increased employee satisfaction, loyalty, and company success.


  • Engage with your employees to understand where they want to see their careers progress and where you can offer training to help them advance.
  • Use technology like MindForge to capture the wisdom of your elder employees and share that wisdom with all of your employees. 

Provide day-to-day information about what's going on. 

Feeling informed about a project's day-to-day progress can empower employees. Providing regular updates and details on tasks, schedules, and changes due to weather or other factors eliminates ambiguity and allows teams to stay focused on their objectives without being distracted by uncertainty. By keeping your team in the know with timely information explicitly related to what they are working towards, you create an environment conducive to greater productivity while promoting trust through clarity across all levels of engagement!


  • Develop a communication strategy for communicating day-to-day project information with your field crews. 
  • Adopt a software platform - like MindForge - to easily add your field crews, send them messages, and track who's opened the messages.

MindForge is all about bringing connectivity to the job site in a way that is most accommodating to those most at risk. There’s a lot of tech out there, but up until now, no one else has prioritized building an application that is specifically designed to support the craft workers’ experience.

Learn more about how MindForge can reduce your turnover rates by scheduling a demo.

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