And Other Essential Criteria to Consider in a Construction Job
We define ourselves by our careers. We find fulfillment in the day-to-day joy of working hard and getting well paid for our efforts. Conversely, ill-fitting jobs with low pay bring a great deal of psychological discomfort and dissatisfaction into our lives. Bottom line: The jobs we do matter, and it’s crucial to find the right now if you want to live a long and actualized life.
Sadly, given how important meaningful work is to most of us, there’s a huge industry bursting with untapped potential at the moment. See, the public perception of construction is a lot of things, but it’s not always one highly thought of for jobs. The fact that construction is often ignored as a job prospect not only plays a huge role in construction’s critical labor shortage, it denies younger generations the chance of rewarding careers.
But make no mistake. A job in construction can prove very rewarding indeed, not to mention it can command an impressive construction salary. And while common perception also holds that construction jobs involve just getting dirty and using tools, that’s not true. The range of possible careers in construction is broad and deep.
Just like any industry, though, specific construction markets pay higher than others. If you’re considering a career in the building industry, then we’re guessing you’re interested in learning more about the highest paying cities for construction jobs in the US. We took a look at 10 of the top-paying cities for construction jobs across the nation so you can make the best choice for the best career for you.
Check out the SlideShare below.
More Than a Salary: Other Aspects of High-Quality Construction Jobs
While construction salary is an essential job quality for the vast majority of us, because bills don’t just pay themselves, other factors contribute to an excellent job in construction. Here are five more key qualities that you should consider in a construction company and role.
1. Values Safety
Construction can be a high-risk industry, which is one of the reasons a good construction salary is important. Nevertheless, you can’t put a price on human life, however, and unfortunately, not all companies hold safety to be as important as others. That’s why, when considering a construction job, you should make sure to inquire about the company’s safety ratings. A good company will not only furnish you such ratings without hesitation, but they will also offer measurable proof that their company is a safer environment.
2. Understands the Power of Innovation
Companies that understand and advocate for technology advancement in construction are ahead of their competition. Not only does this mean the company itself is on the cutting-edge, and therefore more enjoyable and challenging to work for, it means they are likelier to have a steady business and can, therefore, pay a higher construction salary to each worker.
Plus, they understand the business sense of technology in construction and are willing to innovate to advance, rather than stay complacent. This equates to longer job stability for a career there. Moreover, a company that integrates more tech into its employees’ jobs is equipping their workforce with valuable skills. Employees can take these skills into new roles in construction and even new industries, which makes them more marketable job candidates in the future.
3. Supports Work-Life Balance
Again, a basic construction salary package isn’t enough for today’s modern workforce. You can make seven figures and be miserable if you never get to see your family or enjoy some R&R. And while it’s easy enough to say you simply have to advocate for such things (and you do), it all boils down to whether or not your employer values them too. A construction company that prioritizes their employees’ peace of mind and satisfaction is one in which it’s worth investing your career.
We all know that construction can be a stressful job on a daily basis, but getting home in time to eat dinner as a family, tuck the kids in and spend some time enjoying life provides an almost magical cure to the trials of the workday. If employees know they are truly valued as individuals and encouraged to spend time with their families at the end of a day, this can make up for much of the insanity of the jobsite.
4. Encourages Career Development and Training
Another key criteria for a construction job is providing a solid plan for where the employee will go in the future. We, humans, are always looking onward and upward; even when we love the present, we’re thinking towards the future. The same goes for employees, who might thoroughly enjoy their current role, but still want to know what’s on the horizon for them.
Because of this, good construction companies–the ones who keep people around for the long haul–invest heavily in their employees’ career development. That means they provide needed training, which can, in turn, lead to a higher construction salary down the road. They also maintain an open dialogue about the employee’s five-year plan and beyond.
In addition to implementing the right company-wide policies, the organization must also invest in the right managers to help their subordinates think through their options and make a plan that works for them.
5. Promotes for a Culture of Respect
Construction salary is all well and good, and bringing home a good paycheck definitely commands respect from family, friends, colleagues and underlings. However, money isn’t enough to bestow respect on its own–it starts with culture.
The truth is, tensions and frustrations run high on jobsites. When we’re stressed or feel thwarted, it’s tempting to snap, to dismiss others, to assume the worst. It’s up to the company to create a culture that builds morale and provides proper channels through which to solve disputes and vent feelings.
Take it from Dominic Daughtrey, Continuous Improvement Manager at Sundt Construction, who found a refreshing culture when he first started:
“Before I came to Sundt, I had heard nothing but good things from their values to how it’s a 100% employee-owned company,” he told us. “When I started there, it was a big culture shift. I had been in construction since I was 16, nearly 15 years at the point I started at Sundt, and I was jaded. It was a breath of fresh air to see a company doing something entirely different from others in the industry. Sundt is a company that holds every employee equally accountable. We don’t beat up on subcontractors and take advantage of smaller businesses.”
That kind of culture might be hard to find in the meet-deadlines, save-money, contractor-vs-contractor arena that construction seems to breed, but it’s not impossible. And if you’re looking for the right job, it’s worth holding out till you find a company that matches this description.
The Perfect Construction Job? Start with a City, Go from There
No one can guarantee any particular job will be the perfect fit, of course, but there are better and worse ways to go about the job hunt. If you’re open to opportunity and mobile in life–as many graduates and young professionals are–then it makes a good deal of sense to start your search in high-paying cities. Once you have greater confidence in your construction salary, you can use the values above as a roadmap to finding a job that will be a good fit for your lifestyle, family and goals.
So start with looking at our list of the 10 highest paying cities for construction jobs above–and make sure to share with your family and friends who might have an interest as well. Construction needs all the good people it can get, in these 10 cities and beyond.