Strategies for Improving Staff Morale in Civil Engineering Firms

Most people expect to see infrastructure in their cities: bridges, sewage and drainage channels, highways, perfectly built tenement housing, and so on, that they forget the almost supernatural nature of having these things exist. Good governments and smart capitalists make all of these available. However, the civil engineers in charge of these projects tend to be overlooked. It will not hurt to appreciate them more often. Great staff morale in civil engineering is the difference between a poorly done building and one that can last 10,000 years.

Improving Staff Morale
Improving Staff Morale

Here are key strategies to improve staff morale in civil engineering firms.

Appreciate the Medical Personnel

Showing appreciation to the medical staff in your civil engineering firm is as simple as giving them medical awards.

A proper civil engineering firm has a medical department. The medics in this department provide first aid in the case of accidents, help with physiotherapy after hours of heavy lifting, provide electrolyte-replacement therapy to improve efficiency on site, and many other medical services. They even assist with mental health issues because many engineers have some post-traumatic stress from the job. They are as important as the engineers themselves.

Not all civil engineering managers admit to this fact, however. What they do not recognize is that keeping up the morale of the medical team is a great way to keep the engineers and construction workers happy.

When you host your end-of-the-month or end-of-the-year awards, give special medical awards to the medical staff. Also, include them in the general awards so that they feel like a part of the company and not just affiliates. If your civil engineering firm has to hire paramedics to be on standby, appreciate them with awards during your prize-giving ceremonies to boost their morale for their next outing with you.

Then, you will have engineers willing to give their all because of the assurance of a happy and competent medical team.

Appreciate the Top Performers

Just as you give out awards to the medical personnel, give out awards to the best-performing engineers and construction workers. 

The rookie engineer taking the firm by storm deserves a reward. The experienced veteran whose presence assures everyone that good work is about to be done deserves a reward. The most efficient engineer with the lowest churn rates concerning hired hands deserves a reward. Even the engineer whose jokes keep the sites light-hearted deserves a reward.

Awards are a great way to boost their morale. To make them even better, accompany them with monetary bonuses. Promotions, rewards, courses, training, and the assignment of more responsibility are some ways to reward your top performers.

In the early 2010s, during the recession, companies used stretch assignments to keep top performers busy thanks to the lack of work for many civil engineers.

Nothing screams “the executives trust you” than a young engineer getting to handle their first project or assigned tasks to help them build specialty in other areas.

Many engineering companies in the early 2010s were victims of poaching, but a few implemented this rewards system and could keep their staff.

Have Fun

As a civil engineering firm owner or manager, you can get in on the act by giving funny rewards outside the regular performance awards. Say you have an engineer who enjoys coffee a little too much. You can reward them with a funny coffee drinker’s trophy. You can also have the engineers come up with awards themselves. Doing this will boost camaraderie in the firm and make them a closer-knit unit. Allowing the fun also shows that you care about their well-being.

One upside to this is that your end-of-the-month or end-of-the-year awards ceremony will be more fun than you thought. Your employees will surely take jabs at each other with silly awards. There will be lots of laughter and joy spread, and the happiness will lead to a general boost in morale. Make your workplace enjoyable, and morale will remain at its highest.

Upgrade Tools and Working Equipment Often

Outdated tools can cause disagreements between staff and lead to low morale. Many managers do not realize this. “Do not fix it if it is not broken,” is the motto many of them live by for various reasons. But when your engineers see their peers in other companies using the latest building development software, drill bits, or excavators, they will feel left out. The more ambitious ones start looking for ways to leave to gain experience handling the tools that could lead to their career growth.

Upgrading working tools makes engineers feel relevant in the industry, provides opportunities for career growth, helps make work easier as every machine is optimized to simplify a task, and positions your firm as cutting-edge in the industry.

Civil engineers are at a risk of hazards especially on construction sites. A dangerous career like theirs needs constant caretaking. To prevent burnout in your firm, appreciate your staff using awards, monetary bonuses, and other means. Make their working conditions easier. Their happiness means your effectiveness, as staff morale will remain high all year round.