Even though many large-scale building projects are scheduled to begin in the first quarter of 2020, the sector has come to an unexpected halt with the advent of the novel coronavirus.
If you’re a construction contractor or own a construction company, you’re probably starting to rethink strategies for your business’s survival during this time – and how to position it for success following the current economic downturn. As many of KSA’s construction projects are long-term, that means you can use this time not only to strengthen your company against this crisis but also to plan ahead for the future.
Here are some ways your construction business can strategize in order to survive and thrive during a global crisis.
Reevaluate your Supply Chain
Much of the construction industry relies on internationally imported machinery and equipment. With the sudden shift around the world to an essential needs-based economy that means you can’t rely on your usual distributors and suppliers.
Take this time to reconsider local options, and network now (virtually, of course!) so that you can hit the ground running once construction projects resume. Having both local and global supply channels means you are readying your business for any situation, including a major crisis.
In Saudi Arabia, for example, the vital King Abdullah Port is remaining open after switching to e-operations as a precaution against COVID-19. By handling shipments electronically, the port is minimizing face-to-face interactions while ensuring supply chains for essential goods, like food and medicine, remain functional. And 17 governmental organizations are working more closely than ever with port authorities to streamline processes and expand to include non-essential goods as well.
Socially distance, but don’t go MIA
Just because your building projects are on hold, this doesn’t mean you should let business relationships fall to the wayside. Stay in touch with your customers and project partners about rescheduling plans.
All businesses are rethinking their operations strategies in relation to the pandemic, and that means you need to be part of those conversations so that:
- you know what decisions are being made that will impact your construction projects (now and in the future), and
- you can provide unique industry-reshaping solutions.
You’ve Weathered Crises Before
As a construction contractor in Saudi Arabia, you’re no stranger to working through economic fluctuation. In the past new years with the transition from an oil-based economy to a diversified industry in the region, you’ve developed an experience for recovering from economic slumps.
Now’s the time to recall both your survival strategies and the unique risks you took to position your business to take advantage of the opening construction sector – and now one of the region’s largest markets. Draw on your network of industry experts and investors to brainstorm new ideas for staying ahead with your building projects, despite the slow-down.
Remember – Safety First
Construction projects rely on a large amount of labor power, where builders must often work in close proximity. Social distancing to effectively reduce the spread of disease, then, means that construction projects must, temporarily, come to a complete stop.
As a team leader, take the time to explain the new circumstances to your crew, what you foresee for the near future, and, where possible, provide compensation for leave. When you’re ready to start-up projects again, clear communication will go a long way in building team spirit and employee loyalty.
For more information on how to strengthen your construction business with smart strategies for navigating economic crises, reach out to Binex here.