As much as 80 percent of construction firms are struggling to find enough workers to fill hourly craft positions, according to a national AGC survey.
The results came in August through an industry study conducted with help from Autodesk. One of the findings of the survey was that Washington isn’t immune to these national trends. Of the nearly 85 Washington firms that provided data, almost 90 percent said they were “having a hard time filling some or all” craft positions. More than 50 percent said that same hiring difficulty also applied to salaried jobs.
Data from the U.S. Department of Labor suggests construction employments have finally recovered from the 2008 recession and housing market crash, with industry headcounts hitting pre-recession numbers as recently as last month. But even against that positive backdrop, the AGC study reveals potential trouble ahead. Ken Simonson, chief economist of our national organization, said construction labor shortages “remain significant and widespread” and must be addressed.
“The best way to encourage continued economic growth, make it easier to rebuild aging infrastructure, and place more young adults into high-paying careers is to address construction workforce shortages,” he said.
AGC has committed itself to meeting these challenges through its workforce development programs. We’re doing the same right here in Washington, both through our regular trainings and in our Construction Leadership Council efforts.