The Power of an Employee App in Retaining Talent
Most HR professionals will agree that the high turnover rates in the construction industry make managing labor as a resource very difficult. Employee retention is a countrywide challenge, and at the end of 2022, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the U.S. set a new resignation rate record.
The high demand for construction projects and labor shortage provides many opportunities for employees to seek greener fields. This makes it vital for companies to engage their workforce, and a surefire way to achieve this is through communication.
Internal employee communication is about communicating with everyone in the organization in a way that they understand and can connect with. It is a key for employers trying to increase employee engagement and drive employee retention and performance.
Building internal comms in construction
Delivering effective internal communication has many challenges, especially for companies in the construction industry. One of the major issues is that most of their workforce is not office-bound but stationed in the field, working on projects and sites.
Other obstacles that make it hard for construction companies to build effective and engaging internal employee communications include a geographically dispersed field workforce doing a wide range of work, a lack of dialogue and interaction, and the low speed, currency, and relevance of communication content.
Some construction companies have overcome these obstacles by using employee apps. Speakap has been supporting Q&D Construction's internal communication with an employee app for some time now.
Why one construction company uses an employee app
Q&D Construction is a multi-faceted general contractor operating in all heavy or civil, energy, aviation, and commercial building construction areas. The company is made up of many different components and is managed in groups along business lines.
Q&D Construction has become accustomed to a 6 or 7 month construction season where the company-wide employee count jumps from 350 to 600 in a span of two months. The nature of the industry means ample opportunity, competitive job offers and a transient workforce. After the major hiring spree in the Spring the company will add between 20 and 40 employees per month until the weather begins to turn, at which point the count dwindles back to the 400 range.
The company's main aim was to partner with an employee app to differentiate Q&D as an employer of choice within their pool of seasonal workers. They wanted all frontline workers to feel connected and part of the company. They also wanted to make their communication interesting for that group of employees.
By connecting with their workforce, they wanted to increase their employee retention rate and become an employer of choice for all talent.
Retaining talent with an employee app
After an extensive search, Q&D Construction selected Speakap’s solution to implement an employee app for their entire workforce.
We were tasked with the following:
- Streamlining real-time communications between colleagues through mobile and web
- Ensuring that on-the-go staff has access to documents, videos, and images from anywhere at any time
- Facilitating the sharing of appropriate information and questions between teams, locations, and tiers of the organization
- Alerting all employees of breaking company news through timely push notifications
Speakap created the white-label employee app tailored to Q&D Construction’s colors and logos while the staff voted and selected ‘LINQD’ as the name of the app.
‘LINQD’ was born when Speakap released the native iOS and Android apps on behalf of Q&D Construction into the Apple Store and Google Play four weeks later. We assisted with the entire project, from training management and users to the launch.
With the employee app, Q&D Construction has moved from emailing everything to creating two-way communication. This transparency in communication builds trust as employees see how the company reacts to situations. It reaches everyone and creates a common goal.
"Through Speakap, we are attempting to reach a workforce that typically does not bond with its employer, and is also shrinking. With less and less people entering the construction industry as a career path, retention is more crucial now than ever."
Garrett Valenzuela, Communications Director, Q&D Construction
Building employee-employer relationships
Some key results include an employee adoption rate of 82%, with 90% of registered employees being active at least once per day and 100% being active at least once per month.
On average, the following activity now happens each month:
- 12 Important News Items
- 50 Updates
- Receiving 120 Comments and more than 1,000 likes which is an interaction rate of around 30%
Employee satisfaction and appreciation of internal communications by Q&D Construction’s employees increased significantly.
“When you have the ability to reach every single worker you not only strengthen the bond they feel with the company, but you invite them to be part of the big picture. The employee app has created the transparency to see beyond their individual job while giving them a voice in the conversation.”
Lance Semenko, President, Q&D Construction
Speakap has also been nominated as a finalist, along with Q&D Construction, in four categories of the Ragan Employee Communications Awards of 2023.
Using their uniquely branded employee app, the Q&D Construction team can deliver relevant content in real-time to all employees, no matter where they are. This is especially essential in the construction industry and crucial to connect everyone to each other and the company.