Your construction business isn’t going to grow itself, but in this industry, you’re either growing or you’re failing. You don’t plan to fail, but unfortunately, no one has ever put together a foolproof guide on how to grow a construction company.
There are plenty of so-called “complete” guides on growing a construction business, but they lack real, actionable tips that actually help. This isn’t going to be the complete guide, but these 14 tips are certain to help you learn not only how to grow a construction business, but also how to grow a construction company faster.
Here is everything you need to know.
1. Foster Excellent Leadership
In almost every case, the growth or expansion of a construction business is no accident. Instead, it’s the direct result of the vision and leadership of one of your company leaders.
You may own your construction business, but if you’re not directly leading the teams involved in the day-to-day operations — which ultimately provide the service that enables your company to grow — you have to ensure you’re picking and training leaders who share your vision.
That means you need people who know how to lead a team and understand that you want your business to grow and succeed over the long term.
2. Build a Strong Team and Company Culture
If leadership sets the tone and lays the path for how to grow a construction company, company culture provides the vehicle that will take your company down that path.
That’s why creating a strong team and company culture is essential to growing a construction business. A lot of team building and culture creation is done in the hiring process, so make sure you have established and well-defined hiring principles and desired personality traits.
Beyond hiring, it’s up to you and your managers to set the tone for company culture. Sometimes, that will mean firing or retraining people who prove to be problematic to the team, so be ready for that eventuality.
It’s not all negative, of course, but remember that a bad company culture can not only stop growth from occurring, but actually lead to problems that can put your entire construction company at risk. This is a critically important job that requires full-time attention.
3. Invest in the Right Software
If you’re stuck in the old ways, you’re not setting your construction company up for growth. That’s because software and other technology has emerged in recent years that can save your company time and money and enable previously unheard-of scale.
One great example of that kind of software is 3D design software like Cedreo. What used to take days or weeks at the drafting table takes two hours or less in a cloud-based, fully-online software that has all of the power of CAD and all the user-friendliness of an iPhone.
Creating photorealistic visualizations and complete floor plans in a fraction of the time enables you to close more deals and bring in more revenue. That’s a perfect recipe for how to grow a construction business.
4. Implement Business Policies
In the early days of your company, you might have gotten away with a couple of basic spreadsheets and taking notes on napkins. But that’s not going to fly once your construction business grows. In fact, it can get you into trouble quickly. To set yourself up for successful growth, you need to take steps now to implement effective accounting, contracting, and related business policies and processes.
Sometimes, these kinds of developments require a financial investment in addition to the investment of time and effort. If you truly plan to grow your construction company, that investment is more than worth it and will pay off dozens of times over.
5. Cultivate a Professional Network
Networking is how many businesses grow, but because construction involves so much hand-on work, you might be fooled into thinking that networking doesn’t matter for you. If you think that, you’re wrong.
Why? Because getting more clients is step one in how to grow a construction company. And networking is how you will find many of those clients.
Leverage the power of both in-person networking and online networking. That means it’s just as important that you go to trade shows and local business club meetings as it is to make sure your LinkedIn profile is updated and active.
6. Secure Access to Capital
Cash flow determines the overall health of your construction business. But even if you have strong positive cash flow, you can make mistakes when you’re trying to learn how to grow a construction company faster.
More specifically, you might make the mistake of relying only on your business’ money to fund new projects and expansion or even marketing efforts.
For many beginning business owners, using money you already have is intuitive. But what if you just drained the company bank account to float a new project when you realize you’re going to need to purchase another bulldozer? That’s why it’s important to learn when you need to get loans and other sources of capital to pay for parts of your business expansion.
7. Build a Diverse Supply Chain
When you’re a fledgling construction business, you may be just fine with one or two sources of supplies and materials. But when you’re larger, that’s not going to cut it.
That’s because you can’t afford to wait for supply chain disruptions to resolve themselves if you are trying to grow your business. In other words, you need options, and as you’re growing is the perfect time to find them.
To grow your supply chain options, look at vendors similar to the ones you currently work with and assess their level of service. If they look like they might be good to work with, give them a shot on your next project. If they do good work, keep them in the rotation.
8. Streamline Communication
Communication is the cornerstone of business, and if you have problems with communication processes, your construction business isn’t likely to reach its full potential.
For example, if you have unclear contact information in various places on the internet, you may be missing calls or emails from interested prospects. In other words, you may be leaving money on the table.
To remedy this, conduct a communication audit. Look at every channel through which someone might find your business, and ensure that multiple lines of communication are made crystal-clear in each place. And while you’re at it, designate the points of contact within your organization for everything from client questions to worker scheduling.
9. Offer Excellent Customer Service
Unfortunately, it’s hard to stand out in the construction industry. There’s a ton of competition, and each company likes to boast about their abilities. But one reliable way to stand out over time is to offer world-class customer service.
That means consistently responding to all customer inquiries immediately, doing what it takes to satisfy the client, and going the extra mile for each project. The results may not be immediate, but as the years pass, word of mouth, online reviews, and other channels will bring you consistent growth as a result of your investment in customer service.
10. Design a Quality Website
Think of your website as free marketing. With a website, you can gain the attention of internet users who are using search engines or similar channels to find construction companies in your area. Now, look at your website. Does it look good and communicate a clear message?
It needs to. Just like your business card, your business website is a representation of your entire company, and many visitors will judge your company based on it.
With a little effort, your website can be a critical element in your quest to grow your construction company. That’s why it’s worthwhile to invest in high-quality web design and development for your construction company.
11. Employ Expert Legal Guidance
If you thought running a small construction company was a lot of work, just wait until you’re running a large one. You’re going to face huge contracts, complex financial arrangements, payment disputes, and maybe even lawsuits. You’re going to need an expert legal guide to get you through all of that.
The added bonus of hiring a construction attorney, of course, is that they can actually be instrumental in helping you understand how to grow a construction company. They may help you see opportunities to reduce contract-related inefficiencies or secure better deals in general that raise your revenue and keep your business growing healthily.
12. Highlight Customer Satisfaction
When you have happy customers, you can leverage them to get more customers. This is one of the most important — and most often overlooked — steps in how to grow a construction business. You need to highlight your customers’ satisfaction.
In the world of marketing, this is known as “proof” — proof that you’re good at what you do and can deliver on your promises to customers. You can share proof that you get in testimonials and reviews from customers on your website, on social media, or even in printed marketing materials. In any case, make sure you get the word out when you have a happy customer.
13. Utilize Social Media
You don’t have to like social media, but you do have to use it if growing your construction business is on your to-do list. Why? Because the world is on social media, and that includes your potential customers.
That means you need to sign up for all of the major social media platforms and post from your construction company’s accounts regularly. Don’t just post your phone number and hope to get calls, either — develop a comprehensive social media strategy. This might include posting reviews, new blog posts on your website, helpful tips, photos and videos of your completed projects, and much more.
14. Invest in Marketing
Without marketing, your business has only two realistic trajectories: Stay the same or decline. That’s because marketing helps you reach new potential customers on multiple channels, and when you reach potential customers, you raise the likelihood that your company will bring in more revenue.
How much you invest in marketing your construction company should depend on what your budget allows, but make sure you pay attention to the various channels that could bring in new business. These include your website, digital advertising, physical and print advertising, work site signage, content marketing, and social media marketing, among many other potential marketing channels.
Learning how to grow a construction company is one thing. Actually doing it is entirely another. Hopefully, these 14 tips have armed you with knowledge and ideas that will help you in growing your construction business to its full potential.
There’s an extra bonus tip: Try Cedreo. Our comprehensive, easy-to-use floor plan software empowers companies like yours to create detailed 2D and 3D floor plans in a fraction of the typical time, helping you scale your business. And unparalleled photorealistic renderings allow you to close more deals by “wowing” prospective clients in every single presentation.
Ready to grow your construction company? Then you’re ready to try Cedreo. Try it for free today.