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Executive Search & Leadership Advisory

After a long dry period, the construction industry has entered the recovery phase and adding headcount amid growing demand from both public and private construction markets. Although the outlook remains largely positive for the industry, there are a number of challenges that have the potential to decelerate, and possibly hinder, the growth of construction companies. The challenges faced by the construction industry are multidimensional in nature, ranging from shortage of qualified workers to increasingly stringent building regulations and evolving needs of customers.

Until recently, the ‘Green Energy Movement’ was limited to smart cars and green energy only. However, increasing demand for healthy living spaces has compelled construction companies to incorporate their buildings with environmentally sustainable features, including eco-friendly construction materials. Various regulations have been imposed as well to encourage leading players in the construction industry to reduce their carbon footprint by using materials that are recyclable.

Leading construction companies are embracing sustainable practices as a means of standing out from the crowd and gaining an edge over their competitors. However, small- and medium-sized enterprises are facing immense challenges to manage the cost of projects.

High insurance premiums are another issue faced by construction industry. Insurance liabilities remain high for construction companies due to increased risk of work-related injuries. To get coverage for the medical costs and legal penalties resulting from onsite injuries, most construction companies carry large insurance policies with high premiums.

Engineering and construction companies located in China, Korea, and India also pose a threat to the US and European construction industry. Over the past decade, these companies operated primarily in the local high-growth markets to build up cash reserves and expertise. Now as growth slows down in home markets, the companies are expanding their reach to developed markets and are ready to seize the market share of established engineering and construction firms.

To cope with this diverse range of challenges, construction firms need to understand their current market position and identify opportunities to scale in order to reduce operating costs. Building capabilities in areas such as cost controls, quality assurance, and cost estimation could also help companies keep costs low and stay competitive. However, all these initiatives require effective leadership and good governance.

As a leading retained executive search firm, Allen Austin helps companies operating within the construction industry attract, develop, and retain the best executive-level talent that’s capable of navigating their company through an ever-evolving and highly competitive landscape. We leverage our deep expertise of providing tailored leadership development and executive search solutions to help companies determine and address their current and future leadership needs. Our outcome-oriented talent solutions focus on hiring the best-in-breed leaders who have the skills, experience, and strategic insight required to lead a company to success amidst uncertainty.