The last two years have been unprecedented in many ways. At Civiltech, this includes two years of tremendous company growth. Since January 2019, we have welcomed 48 new staff to the Civiltech family, bringing our team to over 130 employees! This growth is across all departments and includes technical as well as professional services. We have hired entry level engineers and experienced P.E.’s. We have added staff to our I.T. group and to our marketing team. We have grown in both our Itasca and our Chicago locations.
While companies must navigate growth carefully, our hiring has been strategic, meaningful, and responsive to demand. We attribute our growth to a number of factors. First and foremost, we gratefully acknowledge a tremendous amount of repeat work from our clients. We continue to strive to serve all of our clients with innovative engineering solutions, highly responsive service, and attention to budget and schedule. We view our clients as partners and understand the importance of creating quality infrastructure improvements for the ultimate end user – the people of their communities.
We also attribute our growth to new opportunities in new regional markets. Over the last year, we are thrilled that we not only got licensed to work in Wisconsin, but we now have active projects in the City of Milwaukee. We are enjoying sharing our experience with and learning from the City.
New service offerings and technical capabilities at Civiltech have resulted in new ways to serve our clients and in hiring needs. Our robust use of drone technology and digital rendering are paving the way to new and innovative project tools, such as combining the two to create animations that help our clients visualize how a design will look and feel when complete.
There have been challenges along the way. The primary challenge that we share with everyone in the industry is a limited pool of candidates. The number of engineers graduating has held constant while industry demand continues to grow.
Physical space is always a challenge for companies experiencing growth. At Civiltech, we had anticipated our hiring needs pre-pandemic. Then, we took advantage of the Covid shutdown to move our Chicago office with minimal disturbance to production. Not only did the space gain a better view moving from the 26th floor to the 32nd floor, but we increased the space from 17 work stations to 48. Also due to Covid, we’ve experienced shifts in staff locations. Some people have shifted to our downtown office and others to our Itasca office. Some staff are choosing to be fully remote – including remote work stations in Kentucky, Florida, Virginia, and Arizona.
The pandemic added to the challenge of reaching potential new hires. Networking opportunities decreased during Covid with many industry organizations and events paused. At Civiltech, we tapped into our own existing in-house network by ensuring that our team was always aware of current staffing needs and offering referral bonuses.
Our most effective tool in meeting our growth needs has been our social media campaign and our website. We redesigned our website in 2018 with a focus on not only sharing project information and useful content for our clients, but on highlighting the positive Civiltech culture and work environment. As part of our redesign, we created several “personas” – fictional representations of who might be visiting our website. We quickly identified that potential hires were a primary audience and our website could be a tool for attracting talent. Aligned with the new website design, we engaged in a rebranding effort ensuring continuity of brand and company culture through our marketing materials, our office designs, and our website.
In addition to our website, our social media campaign provides a strong conduit with which to reach potential hires. Through our social media platforms we show potential team members that could be joining a team that not only produces outstanding engineering, but gives back to the community – locally and globally; a team that is interested in their continued education, growth, and success; and a team that likes to have fun!
We are excited for and proud of our growing team – growing in talent, growing in diversity, growing in collective knowledge. We are grateful for the stellar performance of our staff day in and day out that produces outstanding engineering with projects on time and on budget and for the increasing quality of our pursuits and services. But mostly, we continue to be grateful for our clients who continue to trust us with their projects. It has all translated into two exciting years of positive change and growth.