Organization & People


Engaging a Workforce in Transition

Workforce | Published 12.30.2019

Engaging a Workforce in Transition – Keeping Skilled Labor

The construction workforce is in the middle of a significant demographic shift. Yet few contractors seem prepared for the transition ahead. This poses great risks, chief among them the viability of the industry. The New Horizons Foundation, in partnership with FMI, conducted a survey and interviews exploring how construction-related firms are preparing for the generational […]

An Executive Exit: Succession Strategies

White Paper | Leadership | Published 07.15.2019

White Paper: An Executive Exit – A Closer Look at the Factors That Drive Successful Executive Transitions

The engineering and construction industry is facing an extraordinary number of executive departures. 50% of executive leaders in this industry are transitioning out in the next 10 years. And executives in many SMACNA member firms are part of this universe. With so much transition expected, the Foundation commissioned FMI to address this issue. There is […]

White Paper | Leadership, Workforce | Published 02.01.2019

White Paper: Tools for the Hiring, Promotion, and Talent Development of Sheet Metal and Mechanical Contractor Personnel

Research shows that using personality and aptitude assessments can markedly reduce the variability (and uncertainty) in hiring and promotion decisions compared with relying on resumes and interviews alone. The New Horizons Foundation partnered with lead researchers at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and the University of Kansas to understand how personality and aptitude […]

Enhancing Your Organizational Structure: An Approach to Profitable Operations

White Paper | Organizational Development | Published 05.01.2017

White Paper: Enhancing Your Organizational Structure: An Approach to Profitable Operations

This white paper focuses on traditional and functional organizational structures. It offers a simple and easily understood contrast and comment on the appropriateness of each approach. In contrast to the traditional structure, the paper concludes that a functional analysis of a firm’s operations can be “a tool for designing their organization going forward. It views […]

Using a Board of Directors, Peer Groups, and Other Resources

White Paper | Organizational Development | Published 01.01.2017

White Paper: Using a Board of Directors, Peer Groups and Other Resources to Challenge and Enhance Performance: For HVAC and Sheet Metal Contractors

An area of increasing adoption throughout the construction industry is the use of high-functioning boards of directors, peer groups, and other external resources to provide objective input to enhance performance. Companies are seeking solutions to the many challenges they face in today’s competitive business environment. Leaders are confronted with talent pressures, changing technologies, increased competition, […]

The Use of Just-in-Time Training in Construction

Report | Workforce | Published 09.01.2014

The Use of Just-in-Time Training in Construction

The Just-in-Time Training (JITT) report examines in detail the concept and application of Just-in-Time Training. The report: Defines just-in-time training and when to use it; Identifies  the need for JITT in the construction industry; Looks at who is using JITT now using current examples; Examines current and future training needs for HVAC/sheet metal contractors; Presents […]

Strategic Thinking

Report | Organizational Development | Published 12.01.2013

Strategic Thinking

Strategic Thinking is a blueprint for contractors seeking to use the Futures Study to improve their position as the industry recovers and stabilizes. Strategic thinking should not be confused with strategic planning, but the two are related. Strategic thinking involves the generation and application of unique business insights and opportunities intended to create competitive advantage […]

White Paper | Organizational Development | Published 07.01.2013

Building a Culture of Continuous Improvement

Continuous improvement, as used in this paper and in the industry, is the name of an approach to improvement known and used around the world for decades. It applies to processes in the office, project or anywhere within the organization. The major components of continuous improvement are often referred to as an acronym, DMAIC: Define […]

White Paper | Leadership | Published 02.01.2013

White Paper: So You Want to Be a CEO? Read This First

While this white paper focuses on CEO responsibilities for HVAC/sheet metal firms, it also reviewed CEO functions in other construction industry firms. In reality there are few differences in the overall responsibilities or skills of CEOs within the industry. There are more differences in companies of different sizes and organizational structures. In previous studies commissioned […]

Report | Leadership | Published 11.01.2011

Leadership Selection Practices for HVAC and Sheet Metal Contractors and Fabricators

This report outlines each step of the leadership selection process with recommendations based on best practices. By taking an intentional, focused look at the limitations of current selection processes, organizations using this report can identify ways to make more informed and effective decisions. While no hiring process will ever be 100% accurate, most organizations in […]