What Interview Questions Should I Ask a Construction Superintendent?

December 11, 2023

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Million-dollar contracts. Safety regulations. Tight deadlines. Lots of workers to coordinate with. The job of the construction superintendent is not for the faint of heart.

That’s why it’s so important for the interviewing process for a construction superintendent to be as thorough as possible. A hire who lacks the qualifications or the demeanor necessary to thrive in a job like this will cost you lots of time and money in the long run.

If you’ve been asking yourself, “What questions should I ask a construction superintendent?” when prepping for interviewing potential hires, here’s a list of insightful questions that will help you separate the qualified candidates from the less qualified candidates. 

How Do You Keep a Construction Project on Schedule?

Time is of the essence in every construction project, big or small. Your construction superintendent needs to be able to keep time like a clock, keep a project within budget, and manage people effectively.

Their answer to this question will revealing the following:

  • Their ability to prioritize budget and resources
  • How they react to sudden changes with little notice
  • How they’re able to make sure team members stay on task

How Do You Handle Stress During Construction Projects?

Construction project budgets can be in the millions of dollars, with tons of moving parts and many different workers required to bring projects to completion.

It’s no wonder that the consensus in the construction industry is that the superintendent’s job is the hardest job of all

And no matter how well run your company is and no matter what your rate of success is with project completion, unexpected developments are often inevitable.

When interviewing candidates, make sure they have concrete examples of how they had to keep grace under pressure and lead the project team through choppy waters. Nerves of steel and a clear head are critical traits for a superintendent.

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How Do you Effectively Communicate With Different Project Team Members?

Good communication skills is one of the most important qualities in a construction superintendent.

During every part of the project phase, the superintendent must maintain ongoing communication with all team members–both those who are working onsite and those who work in more administrative roles.

The individual you hire for the role should know how to communicate proactively and consistently with the following teams:

  • Workers on the construction site
  • Third-party vendors
  • Accounting
  • Project managers
  • Stakeholders
  • Inspectors
  • Regulators

How Do You Ensure Safety at Construction Sites?

People are the most important part of any construction project. No matter what, their safety should be the superintendent’s top concern.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that the 850 fatalities in 2021 that were from falls, slips, and trips, the construction industry accounted for 370 fatalities

In a purely financial sense, accidents in the workplace are costly. In fact, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), injuries, illnesses, and fatalities in the workplace cost the country $170 billion.

When you ask a candidate about how they keep construction sites safe, make sure they touch upon these topics in their answer:

  • Identifying and correcting potential safety concerns before they have a chance to happen.
  • Experience with implementing OSHA safety standards.
  • How they organize tools and keep the site clean.
  • Keeping records of injuries on the jobsite.
  • Providing personal protective equipment (PPE).

If your company has massive projects waiting to begin and you need a competent construction superintendent at the helm, we can help. K2 Staffing has more than 40 years of experience helping construction companies fill top positions. Contact us today to get started.

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