Construction Is Hard

…but it doesn’t have to be


Construction Is Hard

…but it doesn’t have to be
Episode 203: Detailing

The devil is in the details. This episode of Construction is Hard takes a look at the perils of runaway detailing budgets.

You probably know a Two Week Thomas. Ask him how much longer he’s on a project, and he’ll always give the same answer: Two weeks.

“He becomes the guy in the trailer and he’s doing all kinds of things. He’s emptying the garbage, you know, he’s keeping the copier full of paper. He’s sweeping the floors.

He’s doing everything, right? He’s running out in the field to answer field questions. He has no real incentive to come off the job. They need him there. He knows he’s needed there.”

He’s sinking your detailing budget.

This season is all about “lumps of coal,” AKA actionable insights that can lead to better business outcomes. For more about Two Week Thomas and life before AutoCAD, listen to the latest episode of Construction is Hard.

Episode 202: A Contractor’s Tech Adoption Mentality, Part 2

We continue our chat with Toby Mitchell from Classic Electric & Consulting about tech adoption for contractors. They dive into how software companies are perceived and how important it is to ensure contractors are the right fit for adopting a tool — or it results in a “failed marriage.”

Episode 201: A Contractor’s Tech Adoption Mentality, Part 1

Season 2 is here, and this time we brought a friend! Hosts Brian Witt and Gary Fuchs are joined by Toby Mitchell, president of Classic Electric & Consulting. Toby shares insights from his paper, providing a simplified guideline and a starting point for contractors who need a roadmap to make confident decisions when adopting new technology.

Episode 101: Better Workforce Management for Specialty Contractors

During the first ever episode of the Construction is Hard Podcast, the crew discusses how Inconsistent Workforce Management is the norm across construction. It’s not standard to do labor planning for all projects, but it should be.

Episode 102: The WFM Bridge

On this episode of the Construction is Hard podcast, Brian & Gary crack open the basics of the Workforce Management business practice uniquely tailored to self-perform and MEP contractors. With technology evolving in construction, the business practice is evolving too.

Episode 103: Move from “We are in Spreadsheet Hell” to Sustainability

It’s common in construction to find labor coordinators in a stressed position, and that’s usually because they don’t have the right platform. Without technology in place, the people and processes take on the weight. Learn about Gary and Brian’s history in Workforce Management, and how they landed at RIVET to focus on specialty contractors in need of a tool fit to the task.

Episode 104: Workforce Management Pillar 1: Forecast

A deep dive into the first pillar of Workforce Management pillars: Forecast. Forecasting is a hot topic — it seems like everyone is chasing it. Brian & Gary break down forecasting and discuss misconceptions related to mixing up project planning with long-term forecasting.

Episode 105: Workforce Management Pillar 2: Roster

We’re on Pillar 2 of the Workforce Management Business Practice. If you’re short on labor, but also behind on maintaining your workforce Roster in a software platform, you’re not set up for success in your field operations. Brian and Gary guide MEP and Self Perform contractors on a successful foundation for Rostering.

Episode 106: Workforce Management Pillar 3: Schedule

What is Scheduling? Brian and Gary go deep on the differences between project and workforce scheduling, who should be doing scheduling, who should be scheduled, how to avoid playing musical chairs, and why it all comes together in a platform fit to the task.

Episode 107: Workforce Management Pillar 4: Communications

Join Brian, Gary & special guest Toby Mitchell from Classic Electric & Consulting on the fourth pillar in the WFM Business Practice: Communications. We define Communications as the active push of information to pertinent parties. Why hasn’t construction adopted better forms of communication? It’s perplexing. The reason: there haven’t been platforms to create the right foundation, creating a “Central Nervous System” so information can be sent the way it should be.

Episode 108: Workforce Management Pillar 5: Information

Why are we talking about Information? Imagine printing out a colored CAD drawing. All the systems are different colors – the power is blue, the fire alarm is red, etc. But then you send the black and white version of the drawing out to the field to save money. The fifth pillar of Workforce Management is Information because prioritizing it can transform your organization from controlled chaos to controlled transparency. Join Brian, Gary & special guest Toby Mitchell from Classic Electric & Consulting breaking down field information, a source of truth and controlled transparency.

Episode 109: Productivity

Join Brian and Gary on the sixth pillar in the WFM Business Practice: Productivity. We define Productivity as “units of work placed or produced per man hour.” And it’s not to be confused with Earned Value Analysis, that’s a management and planning technique that measures productivity. Measuring it against your Labor Plan can alert you to profit fade before it’s too late.

Episode 110: Workforce Management Discipline

You’ve implemented the six pillars of Workforce Management. Now what? Sticking to it with a Workforce Management platform, ensuring strict processes and guardrails are in place across the organization to keep things running smoothly. Join Brian & Gary for a conversation all about Discipline.

Episode 111: Workforce Management R.O.I.

In the season one finale, Brian & Gary go deep on R.O.I. — return on investment. When you marry Workforce Management principles with a tool fit to the task, you open doors to achieving profits and efficiencies that couldn’t have possibly existed before. Learn the differences between Hard R.O.I. and Soft R.O.I., and how changing up your reporting style can make everyone’s life easier.

About the Show

If you have too many overqualified workers, too many construction projects, and too much profit, this show is not for you.

But, if have even an inkling that improving your Workforce Management can improve your specialty contracting business, you’re in the right place.

Welcome to the CONSTRUCTION IS HARD podcast, presented by RIVET.

We cover:

  • How to visualize WFM inside a variety of contractors.
  • How other contractors resolved problems with changing structures, roles, process, and tools.
  • What you can expect to gain, like raising entire company-profit-margins, saved time, and recapturing value from field leaders.


Brian Witt and Gary Fuchs share decades of experience in truly tackling workforce management problems with thousands of contracting businesses, as well as experiences, challenges, and success from contractors across the globe. They also love to share cigars and bourbon 🥃.