Head of Construction

30 yr old family construction business
c£60-80,000 plus package

Outstanding opportunity to join one of the North-West’s leading, private construction and interiors businesses.

Now in excess of 30 years old, this family business has built a strong reputation for their fully integrated service incorporating design, planning, build & fit, primarily for medium sized residential projects, ranging from under £20k to approaching £½m, across Manchester and Cheshire.

The business has seen strong growth, constantly re-investing to keep ahead of the competition. This impressive business has evolved to maintain a unique position in this high growth marketplace and has a clear focus on commercial input; quality of product as well as service is at the core of the business.

Positioned in this competitive but high growth sector, they have built a reputation for constant innovation keeping ahead of both competition and environmental demands. Strong commercial and entrepreneurial passion runs through the business.

This is an energised and entrepreneurial culture, which every employee works diligently to foster. They are an opportunistic growth company that seeks to deliver unparalleled quality of product and service whilst ensuring that quality is replicated internally amongst all employees. Career development opportunities are as unlimited as any employees’ aspirations and hunger.

Combining the above with quality product innovations, a lithe strategy adept at responding to market conditions and an entrepreneurial, small-business mindset, they have a highly commercial approach to their entire organisation, constantly challenging themselves. This is a commercial environment intent on continuous improvement.

A key element to that growth, vision, drive and market-positioning is the recruitment of a commercial Head of Construction.

The Head of Construction will lead the engine-room of the business, owning the delivery process from planning to completion. They will be responsible for overall management of the build team, leading and supporting them to provide a quality product for all customers, in an efficient, safe and professional manner, whilst working in accordance with agreed timescales and budgets towill ensure the highest level of customer satisfaction is obtained. 

From engagement with design & planning teams, input on materials through to hands on management of the site build teams, this appointee will be instrumental to the business’s future success; success they will be part of, and benefit from.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Providing commercial input to the preconstruction stage with Design & Planning Teams
  • Developing and maintaining close relationships with each client and build teams to ensure successful, on-time delivery whilst continuously improving customer experience.
  • Managing the procurement of any subcontractors/subcontracted service providers 
  • Ensuring HS&E and quality standards, operating processes, company policies and all legislative requirements are understood, implemented and adhered to throughout.
  • Leading and managing the Project Team to ensure consistent delivery of all project
  • Preparing comprehensive reports for monthly project reviews to demonstrate HS&E, quality, process, operational and commercial performance and ensure that the project team receive adequate challenge, support and guidance.
  • Ensuring that all project teams are adequately resourced, led and managed to achieve targets and maintain high levels of commitment and morale.
  • Ensuring that all staff understand their roles, responsibilities and performance expectations.
  • Making sure the project is adequately budgeted.
  • Ensuring that appropriate management systems and tools are used throughout the project team.
  • Ensuring that the Project Team fully understands the design and specification requirements of their project; that Subcontractors and Suppliers are fully aware of these requirements and fulfil them; and that the design team has been consulted about any potential issues.
  • Reporting to the Managing Director on progress and any issues.

The Person

As with all appointments, finding the right ‘person’ to fit within this small, entrepreneurial business is key. With a position which brings such influence across the business, chemistry fit is essential.

This is a high-profile leadership position as the person responsible for the business’s delivery performance. 

The appointee will have a proven construction management background within a relevant business, preferably with exposure to a small/entrepreneurial business; they will also likely have done their time ‘on the ground’, getting both their boots and their hands dirty, but may equally have come from a commercial/QS background.

He/she will possess excellent interpersonal skills, be adept at conversing with design and planning teams as comfortably as they do with the project teams on the ground. Gravitas with the project teams will be critical for success.

As well as construction knowledge, they will possess strong process management abilities, and be a robust decision-maker and a project finisher. The role involves providing operational leadership as well as practical support not only to the project/build teams, but also to the business as a whole.

The successful candidate will have strong influencing skills and be able to put across his or her ideas and views clearly to both peers, team members and other members of the management team. The appointee will exude enthusiasm and demonstrate an outstanding but human-centric work ethic – this is a culture where hard work is expected, celebrated and rewarded. They will be constantly questioning those above and below them, but more importantly, constantly questioning (and challenging) themselves….…..but the appointee will definitely have gravitas. It will be immediately obvious to all around them why they have been selected and appointed. They will have the behavioural and technical skills to earn and retain respect from the mud of the footings to the floor of the boardroom. 

Their ability to liaise, influence and engage will be equally apparent with customers. The nature of this business means that with projects, the build teams will be in a customer’s houses whilst they are present, leading to daily contact; the trust required to complete the project(s) with minimal intrusion, stress and interruption is critical, as is the respect required when working within a customer home. 

They will inspire not only their teams, but everyone within the business. They will be motivating as well as motivated.Alongside their leadership capabilities, they will be an ‘action’ style manager. Their attention to detail will be second to none and will be contagious. They will never see themselves as ‘too big’ for any task within the business and will gain huge satisfaction from developing the team in every regard, form and function.

Education, Experience and Attributes:

  • Ability to understand architectural plans from a ‘buildability’ viewpoint, including Structural.
  • Superb customer relationship management, understanding and respecting that their teams are in people’s homes for weeks at a time giving daily contact with the customer and interrupting their daily life.
  • Excellent team leadership, perfectly finding the balance between direction and engagement, especially with teams on site. 
  • Astute material supply chain management, ensuring close to perfect knowledge of the arrival of materials on site to ensure no interruptions in project delivery.
  • Equal focus on labour management, sourcing additional resource when required.
  • Strong technical knowledge, including scheduling materials and structural elements for more complex projects but also with a strong commercial focus to ensure budgets are known and adhered to. Gross Profit, labour costs, material costs and visibility when projects may be about to run beyond budget.
  • Likewise, keen focus on project timescales, both predicting and delivery, ensuring projects timescales are achieved or exceeded – key for both customer satisfaction and variable cost management.
  • Medium-to-long terms forecasting – understanding the sales pipeline (sold jobs) and scheduling start dates, flexibilities and resource planning including keeping all the trades running from one job to the next
  • Experience of running multiple projects concurrently
  • Weekly updates providing a report on all KPIs for each project; Time, costs, budget, profit, exceptions, customer satisfaction etc  
  • Commercial feasibility of projects – when a job is sold looking at the project, working out budget for the build costs and the profitability of each project
  • Forecasting any shortfalls of work, in terms of both trades needed and also long-term project management forcertain/quieter times of the year
  • Overseeing stock/warehouse/vehicles functions within the business
  • Ability to solve technical issues on site or before they occur including any issues post-completion, including identification of all and any issues and leading the rectification to ensure total customer satisfaction.
  • Finally, this member of the senior management team must have a level of business maturity, flexibility and the instincts to adapt to an exciting, dynamic environment characterised by high growth expectations and a collaborative culture…..and have a sense of humour at all times.

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