In less than one month the construction industry’s leading experts will gather in Clearwater Beach, Florida for CURT’s Awards of Excellence Gala. Held yearly, this event recognizes the best of the best in the areas of safety, workforce development, and project excellence. You’re invited, and it’s not too late to register! Sign up for the November 5, 2019 event at It is being held in conjunction with an Offsite Construction & Modularization Summit on November 6, which provides even more opportunity to learn and network.

Safety First . . . Always

Last year, Graycor Industrial Constructors Inc. took home a Construction Industry Safety Excellence (CISE) award. Randy Hynek, Director, Safety, at Graycor commented on the win: “It is truly an honor and humbling experience for the CURT organization to recognize Graycor for safety excellence achievement and commitment to the safety of all our employees, both at work and at home, and how we value their contribution to the success of our company.”

Graycor was one of several companies (both owner and contractor) that took home a safety award in 2018. Recognition demonstrates the award winner has effectively implemented the recommendations of CURT’s Owners’ Safety Blueprint (R-807), which CURT created shortly after its inception; safety has always been one of the organization’s top priorities.

While safety on construction job sites has improved dramatically since owners took a leadership role in the 1970s, there are still construction-related deaths. In fact, out of 4,674 worker fatalities in private industry in calendar year 2017, 971 or 20.7 percent were in construction – that is, one in five worker deaths last year were in construction.

“CURT strongly believes that if companies implement the safety guidelines and recommendations as described in the Owners’ Safety Blueprint, they will naturally move in the direction of the Zero Incident safety culture that the CISE Awards set out to recognize,” said Rick Bilotto (retired from Procter & Gamble, CURT consultant), in an article in The VOICE (Spring 2018).

Recognizing Project Excellence

Construction Industry Project Excellence (CIPE) awards will also be presented this November. This recognition is fairly new to CURT’s award line-up; it was created in 2016 to recognize project teams for their outstanding delivery of capital projects. As part of an overall focus on improving the industry’s productivity, leading project teams are acknowledged for exceptional productivity performance.

One of the first recipients of a CIPE award, at the 2017 Awards of Excellence Gala, was a team from Merck Sharpe & Dohme Corp., who delivered a steam line project over 25 percent below the funded budget and over 40 percent under the original estimates. Ron Szabo, Associate Director of Engineering, Merck & Co., Inc., said of the award: “Winning this award is very special to us. The coordination of weekend crane work and critical overhead and tie-in work was carefully planned and coordinated, as was the execution of the entire project. This planning and communication paid off in the end result of the project.”

Addressing the Workforce Crisis . . . One Initiative at a Time

It is no secret that the construction labor force – or lack thereof – is one of the industry’s leading concerns. According to the Commercial Construction Index’s Q3 2019 report, the percentage of respondents who rated the difficulty of finding skilled workers at a high level shot up to 61 percent in Q3. While this is consistent with previous findings in 2018 (57 percent) and 2017 (60 percent), it is notably higher than the percentages from the first two quarters of 2019, suggesting that the severity of the skilled worker shortage shows no signs of abating.

CURT recognizes innovative training and education programs that encourage the pursuit of a career in construction with its Workforce Development Award. ISC Constructors, LLC earned a Workforce Development Award last year for their investment in attracting new individuals to the industry, and providing each entry-level associate the opportunity to learn a craft through ABC Training, utilizing the NCCER curriculum and on-the-job training.

Ronnie Gulino, Project Coordinator at ISC Constructors, LLC, said of winning that award: “Receiving this award from CURT helps validate that our workforce development program is moving in the right direction and further substantiates that we are beginning to achieve some of the goals we have established for our program.”

See You in Florida!
The 2019 Awards of Excellence Gala is going to be an evening of excitement as industry leaders are recognized for their dedication to safety, productivity, and workforce development. If you want to learn how companies are leading the pack in these areas, contact the CURT office to find out how you can attend. Email or call 513-981-2773.