Construction companies continue to face a serious skilled labor shortage. Although demand for qualified workers has been increasing steadily over the last several years, the impact of the Great Recession continues to limit the supply of candidates to fill those jobs — yes, even all these years later. And the short- and long-term effects of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak on the industry are still being felt and assessed.
To overcome this skills gap, construction businesses need to take advantage of all recruiting options available, including online job sites.
Source of the Shortage
Much of the problem stems from the loss of jobs during the Great Recession. Even though the recession was more than 10 years ago, the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimated that the construction industry lost more than 1.5 million jobs from December 2007 to June 2009.
Many of the workers who lost their jobs during that period left construction permanently. Some went to work in different industries, others returned to school to change careers and many retired. So, though demand to fill these lost jobs is high, candidates to fill them haven’t been easy to find.
Strategies to Consider
There are many long-term strategies for finding the talent you need. You could partner with local high schools, community colleges and trade schools to establish internship and skills certification programs. Internally, you might undertake new initiatives to “upskill” current workers and attract new ones. Your company may also be able to better take advantage of job fairs, temp agencies and recruiters with experience in the construction industry.
But, if you’re looking for a more immediate solution, online job boards are particularly valuable. Because many of the workers who left the industry in the wake of the recession were older, and many Baby
Boomers have since retired, today’s jobseekers tend to be younger and more likely to conduct job searches online.
There’s no shortage of websites to check out. The right ones will depend on distinctive aspects of your business, such as its location and specialty. Here are a few places to start:
- Roadtechs.com, and
A Difficult Time
Like so many companies, yours may be struggling to adapt to the economic changes wrought by the COVID-19 outbreak. You might have put hiring plans on hold indefinitely. However, now could be a good time to connect with job candidates online and gather their information, so you can touch base with them when conditions improve.