Spring Construction and the challenges of a dwindling labor force
Even though its feels like spring is taking its time, the spring construction rush is here. Construction projects continue to rise. Building permits in the U.S. have almost doubled since the COVID-19 pandemic started and are currently at an all-time high. The increased project load puts us back into the familiar feeling for having the work coming in and available, but not having the labor to support that project load.
We, in the construction industry, do have something to be very proud of during the COVID-19 pandemic.
While other industries were brought to a standstill, construction outperformed in their unemployment rates.
In fact, construction employment is only down 3 percent compared to pre-pandemic numbers. These numbers are proof that construction plays a pivotal role in the U.S. economy.
Construction has shown its ability to adopt new standards and practices to avoid COVID-19 outbreaks.
The new COVID-19 safe jobsites are helping to keep the employment numbers steady.
In my meetings with high school students, one of their main concerns about joining the construction industry is the perception that construction has a higher-than-average volatility. The reasoning for this stems from their concerns from the economic crash of 2008. Having the COVID-19 data available reflecting positively in correspondence with the construction industry will help us communicate to the future workforce the resilience of the construction industry.
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