4 strategies the industry needs to alleviate labor shortage and attract new talent
To solve the labor shortage, the construction industry needs to hire more women, provide more training for minority groups, recruit young talent, and change perceptions of careers in construction.
A lack of career advancement, training, and development is the top reason people leave their job. While compensation is important, it is not the most important factor in employee retention. To solve the labor shortage, there is a need to hire more women, provide more training for minority groups, and change perceptions of careers in construction.
According to the National Association of Home Builders data, open construction positions rose to 410,000 in October 2021, up from 253,000 one year earlier. The construction industry will have to train and employ 2.2 million new workers over the next three years to meet demand.
Recruit more women
Bringing additional women into the construction labor force represents a potential opportunity for the future. In 2020, women made up 10.9% of construction labor force, up from 10.3% in 2019. Women in construction are mostly involved in such occupations as office and administrative support, management, business, and financial operations. Even though the number of women in the industry is growing, there is still room for improvement.
Training for minority groups
The Home Builders Institute licenses more than 500 trade skill training programs across 47 states. They are focused on training women minorities and high school students. Statistics show that immigrant workers remain a vital source of labor to the construction industry. But there is a decrease in the inflow of newly arrived immigrants into the construction workforce.
Recruiting younger Talent
According to the latest American Community Survey, the median age of construction workers is 41. These older workers are concentrated in managerial positions such as inspectors, construction supervisors, and construction managers. Workers under the age of 25 represented 10.8% of workers in the construction industry in 2019, up from 9.7% in 2015. This growth is positive, but the industry needs to recruit more young talent.
Changing perception about careers in construction
Employees need to see a clear future for themselves, and they must feel valued and respected at work. This will help in changing perceptions about a career in construction. In order to make jobs in construction more attractive, workers need to see opportunities for career advancement, training, and learning new skills. People are looking for the best overall workplace environment when they choose what careers to pursue. These changes will help the industry ease the labor shortage.