By the Numbers: Results of First CFSTL Survey

By on July 25, 2018

by Tom Finan, Executive Director, Construction Forum STL

Almost five years in (our official anniversary is November 20), we thought it was well past time to ask you how we at Construction Forum STL were doing, and what we could do better in delivering on our mission of “building the St. Louis Region’s future through inclusive engagement, unbiased communication, and focused action.”

On June 28 we launched the CFSTL survey to a list of 10,656. A total of 326 of you completed the survey. As the statisticians would say (and we should clarify that neither this survey nor the data were vetted by outside experts), that means that the “confidence level” of the results is +/-5.35% at a 95% level of certainty. In other words, we’re pretty certain that what the survey told us is what you wanted us to know.


The Envelope, Please

Here, in the order of importance is the way you rated suggested topics for articles and programs (the number in parentheses is the total number of  responses for that topic).  The items were ranked from 1-5, with one being “very interested” and 5 being “not interested” Scores are weighted based on the number of responses.

  1. Building Projects (314)
  2. Public Policy Affecting Construction (315)
  3. Regional Collaboration (319)
  4. Two-Way Tie
    1. Infrastructure Projects (312)
    2. Workforce (319)
  5. Three-Way Tie
    1. Management/Design Technology (311)
    2. Diversity/Inclusion (309)
    3. Intra-Industry Collaboration (310)
  6. Manufacturing Modularization (307)
  7. Opioids, Mental Health (305)


Who Are You? 


Given the Forum’s mission of “inclusive engagement” and our bylaws, which state that we are a “memberless” organization, defining participants in the CFSTL’s  programming is a moving target. Having said that, participants in the Forum range across a broad cross section of job titles. Of the 326 respondents, 254 chose to be identified by title. Not unexpectedly, the largest category (13.39%) was “other”.

“Other” encompassed everything from professors, to mayors, labor officials, and one retired Circuit Court judge. The five next largest categories were: owner/partner/principal, 13.39%; president, (11.42%); vice president, (9.06%); project manager (8.66%); and a tie between business development/sales and manager (8.27%).

You Really Like Us

At the risk of sounding a little bit like Sally Field’s frequently misinterpreted Oscar acceptance speech, we want to genuinely say “thank you” for the many complimentary comments that accompanied the survey.  A total of  59 people submitted written comments (Click here to view  and download a PDF of all comments.).

While many commenters approved of CFSTL’s efforts, there were also constructive criticism and suggestions. “The first two installments of the series on regional fragmentation were excellent,” one commenter wrote. “The third, not so much. It feels like the Forum should now take a run at developing the concept of what can our AEC industry do to advance the ball of improving regionalism here.”

Thank You

Thanks to everyone who participated in the survey, to all of you who have believed from the very beginning that it was possible to make a difference for our region, and to our sponsors and collaborators who help to make the work Construction Forum STL possible.



About Tom Finan