Guest blog by Regan Burke

Civil Contracting is a legacy industry.

 I have been involved in our family business for 20 years, this is but a mere blink compared to the savvy veterans, who are still at it and who live and breathe the ins and outs of construction.

 Most businesses, family or not, have strong values and these, along with the tricks of the trade, are passed on by showing and doing. Contractors know that wealth of knowledge is fundamental in the industry. It’s almost an unspoken rule, to talk, share and make the way we do things better and better. Even between acquaintances that you consider competitors. It’s how the industry evolves while keeping its integrity.

 In a day and age, and industry, when time is worth even more than money, it’s essential to not try and re-invent the wheel. “Ain’t nobody got time for that” as they say these days. Formal processes, such as pre-construction meetings, safety reporting, QC checks, to employee agreements, things we do over and over, occasionally muttering expletives and thinking “There’s got to be a better way”.

 Although it is great to regularly catch up with other lads and lasses in the industry, it’s hard these days to get the time to have a good chin wag about what’s really going on out there, if others are having the same headaches that you are.

 To keep how we do things fresh and way, way better, to free that workload so maybe we get home before midnight (my wife reads this… So now she can’t say I don’t try), we need to maintain and promote mutually beneficial networking and information sharing.

 Luckily we are in a Technology Revolution, and communication can happen instantly and at our fingertips. For us, it will be finding ways to maintain the integrity the industry relies on and utilise the tools this new era has brought us.

 There are so many platforms where we can seek, find and explore now. My personal favourites are:

Civil Contractors NZ – a national body for Civil Contractors – Holding frequent regional meetings for updates, hold annual awards to acknowledge members in the industry and have a bunch of resources and tools at its disposal for members to utilise.

MBIE – they understand the need for innovation especially in a sector that is currently experiencing a boom in need.

CIVILSHARE – an app just for Civil Contracting where you can trade resources and talk within the industry.

Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn – large and small companies share thought-provoking news articles that relate to many of our daily slogs.

 As a wise man from the 90’s said. “Stop, collaborate, and listen.”

So lets use the tools technology is presenting to keep in the loop. We are the ones building the future so let’s try and work together as a well-oiled machine.

 If there are others out there with similar views and would like to discuss, get in touch,  drop me an email. Or comment below?

Guest blogger Regan Burke is Operations Manager at ICB Retaining & Construction

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