Poor communication can have disastrous consequences on work sites. Heavy equipment operators can face immense pressure to ensure their work is carried out safely and on time, but can also often feel cut off or isolated from the rest of the crew. When there isn’t an open line of communication between equipment operators and crew members, you run a high chance of something going wrong. It’s not always obvious when you need to improve communication for your heavy equipment operators, but if any of these signs are appearing, it might be time.
1. Safety Concerns
Safety should always come first, and improving communication will no doubt improve the safety for heavy equipment operators and other workers on site. If there is an accident, workplace communication will always be examined closely, so it is worth ensuring clear and effective lines of communication are in place for everybody’s best interests.
2. Missing Deadlines
Missing deadlines will cost your business money. Anyone can have an off day, but if operators are struggling to keep up with workloads, or projects are regularly being pushed out, you may need to look at your team communication. Clear and direct communication will help team members understand roles and responsibility which will also help heavy equipment operators work more efficiently. You may find tiny improvements can snowball into big savings!
3. Long Waits
Operators can sometimes spend a lot of time waiting on site, rather than working. Or the rest of the team can be left waiting for operators to deliver. This waste of time is a common problem for many work sites. Heavy equipment operators are often working with a different project crew, so they have to be able to adapt to different working rhythms. Clear communication between operators and the rest of the crew will help reduce the time spent waiting around on site and increase productivity.
4. Equipment Damage
Are equipment repair or replacement costs impacting your profit margin? When operators try to rush to complete tasks, there is a good chance equipment is being pushed beyond its limits. If real-time communication between operators and other team members is poor, you run a very high risk of accidents or equipment damage. Improving communication helps to reduce operator error, equipment damage, and keeps the work site safe.
5. Stress or Morale
Heavy equipment operators understand the dangers that come with their work, and the responsibility to ensure they work safely. However, poor communication, isolation from the project, or feeling like they have been set up to fail, all contribute to high stress and low morale – two things you never want on site. Improving communication ensures nobody feels out of the loop and allows all workers to to operate their equipment safely.
Every operator and site worker wants to finish their day’s work safely, and with a sense of accomplishment. If you see any of these signs appearing regularly, it’s time to have a look at improving communication. Clear and effective communication empowers all workers to be productive, efficient and work safely, and this will all go towards achieving great results on site.