With the arrival of our Christmas campaign, it’s safe to say that summer is well and truly behind us. However, as much as we love Christmas, the festive spirit can run a little dry when it comes to arriving for work in freezing temperatures and rainy conditions. So much so, we thought we’d address how to battle through the colder months and improve productivity on site…
Whilst colder temperatures do little to keep staff motivated, chilly environments also fail to work well with on-site materials. Take cement, for example – to reach its full strength, supplies must be mixed at 4°C or above. Knowing the limits your materials can withstand is essential for boosting productivity on site. Get ahead of the game and know what’s in store for the week ahead – if the UK is anything to go by, it could be a mix of hail storms and arctic conditions, all within the space of 7 days! When you know what’s on the horizon, you can prioritise the bits and bobs which may prove problematic in colder climates, before the freezing weather arrives.
Plummeting temperatures force us to wrap up warm. Layers are the answer, trapping heat between the fabric and ultimately keeping you warmer for longer. Whilst it’s vital to load up on weather appropriate clothing, we’re well aware that anything too thick can be restrictive – trying to manoeuvre a hand saw whilst wearing thick leather gloves always proves tricky! Opt for layers which you can take on and off easily to make sure you can go about your day with as little inconvenience as possible. With their easy on-off fit, these CLC Flexi-Grip Gloves should do just the thing.
When winter nights come creeping in as early as 3pm, team morale can take a dive when it feels like bed is calling! In our experience, the two ways to keep staff happy are as follows: 1. food and 2. heat. Even if the outside is freezing, there are steps you can take to warm up working environments – heated tools, indoor heaters, even little hand warmers can go a long way! A warmer workforce is also likely to result in a healthier workforce, so productivity will be less likely to suffer through staff calling in sick or feeling under the weather. And like we said, the odd chocolate biscuit here and there can put a smile on anyone’s face…
Whilst heating supplies can prove costly, making efficient use of energy supplies will reduce avoidable expenses. Removing unnecessary cooling systems in the winter, or patching up roofs so that heat doesn’t escape will make your money stretch that little bit further. Ultimately, this frees up more money to spend elsewhere, so you can justify investing in floodlighting or site heating that will help staff work more efficiently for longer.
Although the team may feel up against the limited daylight hours, a lack of light does not necessarily mean that they should work faster – rushed labour can prove a problem to site safety. However, whilst it’s essential that staff resist from working hastily, darker evenings do mean that they will have to work smarter, if they are to meet deadlines and get the job done. Being proactive will make better use of time and achieve more efficient results. Prioritise jobs which maybe cannot be rescheduled (whether that be because of weather forecasts or team schedules) and demonstrate a positive, can-do attitude so you can get the most out of your day – carpe diem!
Finally, site security is often overlooked when it comes to protecting productivity. When overheads are already high, security is usually the first thing to slack. However, turning a blind eye to site safety will unfortunately not do – especially in the winter months, when the darker nights accommodate thieves who work in the shadows. When you think about it, the value of tools and machinery left on the job adds up – and to leave these items unguarded is a huge risk, particularly when your livelihood depends on them. Better safe than sorry, so invest in security measures to prevent projects being delayed by situations that could have been avoided.
For sure, winter can be a brutal time of the year, but applying these simple tips and tricks should keep you warm this coming season – in more ways than one! Head over to our product section to explore the products that can help combat the colder climates.