By Nadine Cetz-Tec
My name is Nadine Cetz-Tec and I’m in a program called Girls, Inc. Eureka! STEM. As part of my involvement in Girls, Inc. I had the opportunity to work with a team of women at Haselden Construction to expand my knowledge of all the career opportunities that exist in construction. During a four-week timespan, I learned about all the different roles and responsibilities of the people that build commercial construction projects! I didn’t have any idea there were so many career paths to choose from! I hope you find my recap to be as interesting as my conversations.
Retaining the Right Team
Human Resources (HR) can fit in any stage of construction because it ensures that people communicate so that a project can be built without any problems. HR does many things including recruitment, compensation management, benefits (like medical and dental), training and development, performance appraisal and management, employee and labor relations, and compliance management. They also look for ways to find new staff for Haselden through college recruiting, referrals, and professional recruiters.
Building Relationships is Part of the Building Process
The first step in the construction process is Business Development (BD). BD is responsible for getting new jobs and makes sure the proposals are accurate and consistent. When Haselden looks for new projects three things important are 1) to make sure they are commercial buildings; 2) that they are in Colorado or Wyoming; and 3) that they have proper funding. Once a project meets all the requirements, they later must convince the owners why Haselden is best for their project. I learned that there were several categories of construction projects including commercial buildings, residential buildings, and industrial buildings. I also learned the process it takes to get a project. The proposal includes important details about the team, their experience, and their plan of how they will build the project.
Real Estate Development
Real Estate Development is another component of Haselden’s business. There is a lot of research done to make sure what type of building is best for a city, town, etc. The process includes deal sourcing, design, construction, property management, and finally selling the building. Real Estate Development is something I am really interested in.
Prequalifying, Preconstruction and Estimating
The next steps are done in prequalifying the subcontractors. Prequalifying subs means once there is a project, they review safety records, finance, and subcontractors experience to hire the very best subs.
They review drawings to develop the project pricing. Three types of drawing are SD, DD, and CDs. Estimating and preconstruction helped with my project by showing how I should scale and estimate my project.
Tools of the Trade
Before building a project there is a team who build the building using software first. VDC is responsible for making sure all the systems fit properly in the building using clash coordination meaning they look at all the pipes and lights and makes sure there is no intersection or clashes. They then create installation drawings from the coordinated model. Another service is virtual reality which is used to help visualize facilities. There is also additional technology like 3D
printing and 4D models which helps visualize what the building is going to look like. Construction takes lots of different software tools for different stages of construction which makes things more efficient.
Building the Project
Then they start moving the dirt! Project Managers make sure that the project is getting done on time, manage distribution of resources, manage risk and make everyone is getting paid. Communication is key with many different people involved on a project with different education levels, different learning styles, and sometimes language barriers. In order to communicate
effectively there are tools in place to help people actively listen such as asking questions, being concise and showing proper body language. Something new I learned was how important communication is in construction and good ways to communicate. A Senior Project Engineer
makes sure everything Haselden needs to build the building (materials) is accounted for and on schedule. They do daily job walks to check to see if things are installed correctly using quality control measures. Another responsibility is project documentation, specifications and RFI’S.
This is another career I am really interested in!
Administration and Oversight
Accounting helped with my project by taking the prices of everything I had in my bedroom and put it all together to come up with a budget. They work with spreadsheets of the prices to see how much they are going to pay the subs and the cost recovery.
A project coordinator is another role which handles management plans, resources, equipment timeframes and important paperwork like documents and billing. She works with the onsite team to monitor progress within the project.
Marketing for Construction
After a project is complete, the project is showcased on the Haselden website. Haselden is passionate about supporting the communities where they work.
After this experience I think that construction is more complicated then it seems and being able to see an idea turn into something you see on the streets is so fascinating. I think that construction is a great industry to work in because there is a little bit of everything for everyone. After talking to the staff at Haselden I have learned so much and I am thinking of pursuing a career in construction. I am so thankful for anyone who took time out of their day to talk me. This is an experience I will never forget!