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69% of Construction Firms Struggle to Fill Hourly Positions

The Associated General Contractors of America recently conducted a survey of almost 1500 contractors and the results were a bit alarming regarding the inability to fill not only hourly positions, but also salaried field and office positions as well.

While pay rates are going up which will help attract new talent into the industry, there is a considerable gap in craft skills that are simply not promoted in schools – only adding to the challenge this industry is being faced with.

Highlights of the survey:

  • 69% of surveyed construction firms have found it difficult this summer to fill hourly craft positions
  • 75% of construction firms said they believe it will be difficult to find hourly craft workers over the next year
  • 38% reported difficulty hiring salaried field positions, 33% reported difficulty hiring salaried office positions, and 15% reported difficulty hiring hourly office positions

What else is a problem?

Beyond having to pay more, firms are seeing more reportable injuries and illnesses, including more compensation claims.  And the impact of these shortages can go beyond just finding good talent  – the greater U.S. economy could be at risk from slowing scheduled work and firms unable to  bid on projects which could inflate the overall cost of construction.

What is being done to mitigate the problem?

  • 48% of surveyed construction firms have increased pay for hourly craft workers, ramped up in-house training, and added more OT hours
  • The AGC is calling upon the government, both state and federal, to promote technical training in schools
  • Proposed immigration reform could also have a potential impact on resolving in the coming years

For more information, you can view the full survey here: nationwide survey 

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