TMG Construction: Recruiting a Diverse Workforce
By: John Rossheim
Recruitment is a key function at TMG Construction Corporation, an 85-employee commercial and civil design-build firm in Purcellville, Va.
TMG has a small workforce that requires very diverse skill sets, from carpentry to engineering to accounting.
For some roles, the company relies on conventional recruitment. “We find project managers, superintendents and construction engineers through employee referrals, job boards and word of mouth,” says Rick Wilson, Director of Human Resources.
Occasionally, a requisition requires TMG to go further afield. “We connect with professional associations to recruit for openings like estimator and construction engineer, which are harder to find. Sometimes we’ll post jobs on college sites or do campus job fairs.”
Construction does not traditionally field a diverse workforce. But with a woman founder, TMG does better than average. CEO Tanya Matthews is heavily involved with the American Institute of Constructor's professional association and meets with many other groups in the industry and beyond.
“She also interviews everyone we hire,” increasing her visibility in applicant pools, says Wilson. “We find that college campuses are a great way to find candidates who are members of minority groups.”
TMG also turns inward to train new hires and to groom promising employees for advancement. “When you’re a small company, you do a lot of on-the-job training,” says Wilson. This can take the form of informal apprenticeships and cross-training, where the cost is measured in terms of employees’ time rather than out-of-pocket.
“We match new hires up with experienced workers for mentoring,” says Wilson. “Construction superintendents love showing less experienced people coming out of school how it’s done. And these college students know technology, so they learn from each other.”
Mentoring turns out to be a great way of increasing job satisfaction for experienced workers and also helps to boost worker retention.
TMG also offers tuition reimbursement and has put many employees through outside certification courses for safety and quality control.
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