Diversity in the Construction Industry
In recent years, the importance and emphasis put on diversity in the workplace have continued to grow. Along with many other industries, construction is beginning to see the benefits and necessity of diversity and inclusion. In the past, it was extremely difficult to meet diversity targets. Even though there were goals, there were no reliable programs to address and respond to these diversity targets. In the current political landscape, there has been a huge push for inclusion in communities and places of work. People are realizing that if we work together to achieve inclusion, we can make enormous positive changes!
So you’re ready for change, but what barriers will you face?
Inviting diverse contractors to participate in your project doesn’t always mean that they will win the bid. In addition, workers must have skills applicable to work in construction. You can’t invite people to work on your job if they don’t know how to perform any of the necessary tasks.
So how can we foster inclusion with these barriers in mind?
Make an effort to establish relationships with diverse contractors. Just because you aren’t currently working on a project with them doesn’t mean you can’t have a relationship. If you take the time to build these partnerships, you increase the chance of them being on your regular bidder’s list. If they are regularly on the bidder’s list, you will likely work with them at some point.
Connect with organizations that promote diversity in the construction workplace. An example of one such organization is the National Association of Women in Construction.
Improve your culture
If you want to foster inclusion and attract a diverse workforce, you need to make sure you have policies and a culture that reflects inclusion.
Understand the importance of diversity and inclusion
You can’t foster inclusion until you truly understand why it is needed. Diverse backgrounds bring different perspectives and new ideas. When you bring people who have had different life experiences together, you see innovation. Each individual brings something different to the table, giving you and your construction company more opportunity to learn.
As our world moves towards being more inclusive, it is crucial that the construction industry continues to work towards this as well. With more inclusivity, construction will create, innovate, and grow like never before. The tools for a more inclusive workplace are in your hands, so start working.