• Construction and property – 5 tips for successful recruitment
    4 minutes

    Companies in the Czech Republic are currently feeling the hunger for workers in the construction and property sector. Devire even registers a 48% higher demand for project manager (various seniority) and property manager positions since January 2022. Generally, companies are looking for a lot of junior roles in this segment. Lenka Fabová, business manager, and Jakub Braunstein, senior consultant at recruitment company Devire, took the opportunity to write down some tips on how companies can increase the chances of successful recruitment in this area.

    Construction and real estate background

    1. Watch your wages

    Although demand is high, candidates headhunting is not easy. Most are holding on to their jobs and have no desire to change. And no wonder! Wages in many companies have not increased in the last three years. Similarly, bonus systems and benefits remain unchanged.

    “Companies tell us that they know very well the wages in the sector. Yet, the reality looks different. That’s why I recommend mapping the market well so you know if you are competitive at all. Clients, for whom we do salary surveys, are then usually surprised and admit they simply were asleep at the switch. Plus, you just can’t attract candidates with 3-4 years of experience into a project. They often have commitments, so they consider the job choice very carefully,” explains Fabová.

    2. Don't forget about benefits

    Work benefits have a strong say in the construction and property industry, but companies still neglect them. According to our data, senior managers often don’t have a company car. And not all companies offer the now common standard as in other industries – 25 days of leave.

    “For example, I hear requests from facilities managers for a car, yet companies don’t provide cars at all, and when they do, it’s not for private use. It’s a shame! If the company is unable to satisfy employees financially, it would be nice to at least score some points with benefits,” says Braunstein.

    3. Form partnerships with schools

    Most recruiters look for candidates on LinkedIn and job portals. Yet there’s no easier way than getting candidates right off the school desks. By connecting with educational organizations, you open the gates to a lot of potential employees.

    “It is unfortunate that educational institutions, as well as company leaders, often forget about collaborating with secondary schools and universities. This is a great tool to teach young people that roles like asset manager or property manager are interesting careers. Then it’s just a step towards “hunting” a new employee,” states Fabová.

    Jakub Braunstein and Lenka Fabová
    Jakub Braunstein and Lenka Fabová are recruitment experts in the construction and property sector at Devire recruitment agency.

    4. Don't let candidates get away

    At the start of summer 2022, Devire recorded a total of 63 property manager positions, 48 facility role positions and 24 asset manager positions in Prague alone. It’s obvious that candidates definitely have a lot to choose from. So, it’s important that recruiters in the construction and property segment act quickly.

    “Companies are shooting themselves in the foot if they don’t make the selection process short. The ideal situation is when the first round takes place within a week of receiving the CVs. At the same time, I recommend inviting the line manager to the interview already, so that the important people get to know each other in time,” advises Braunstein.

    5. Respect the law

    In some cases, freelance contracts are bordering on the so-called Schwarz system. However, today’s candidates are not attracted by this anymore. You’re unnecessarily exposing yourself to get in trouble with the law. This isn’t the only dead end that companies like to get into. You can also burn your fingers if you don’t check references on candidates properly.

    “I notice that companies are increasingly trying to get references on candidates. It’s good to know that poorly worded inquiries may be in violation of the labor code. The unpleasant consequences will be felt not only by the candidate, the previous employer, but also by you. I always advise our clients to request a reference contact from the candidate with their consent. Alternatively, leave these tasks to us,” concludes Fabová.