Construction demand is growing, however, the industry is finding it hard to fill job openings. According to AGC (The Associated General Contractors), seventy percent of contractors are having a hard time finding qualified construction workers.
The construction industry has a misleading reputation of low pay and laborious work. Many parents do not consider construction to be a viable career compared to engineering and medicine, so fewer children are encouraged to pursue it.
While most of the population in the construction industry still consists of Baby Boomers, they are set to retire soon, leaving behind a huge gap to be filled. Millennials can grasp this opportunity for growth in this career and explore it further. Why are Millennials avoiding the construction industry? Let’s find out.
1.The Bad Stigma
We are wired to believe that only low-paying workers work in the construction industry. Construction is not just about laying cement and putting down bricks, rather it involves working on interesting and technology-driven projects. More people today look for customized work, whether it’s houses, offices, or commercial buildings. Clients want to work with companies that are educated and well-versed in the use of technology for construction projects. This can be exciting for people who love working with technology and also at the same time like getting their hands dirty.
Most construction workers earn more than the minimum wage. In fact, the Department of Labor expects a 24% growth in carpentry trade in 2022 with an average wage of $90,000 per year. According to FMI, construction management graduates can expect competitive pay compared to other sectors.
As a construction company or a hiring team, if you are planning to hire candidates, ensure that they have a reasonable base pay and a good overall package. To attract top talent, you need to break the existing myths around the construction industry and show through example.
3.Lack of Flexibility
Millennials and Gen Z want to work at jobs that offer flexibility. Due to the pandemic, more people are going for remote or hybrid work options. In the construction industry, remote work is often not a possibility. This prevents Millennials and Gen Z from pursuing careers in construction and craft work.
Introducing perks such as paid time off, sick leave, and medical benefits will help attract talent. As more Millennials are entering parenthood, it is also important to provide paid paternity and maternity leave.
4.Lack of Diversity
Construction is largely considered a man’s job. Millennial and Gen Z women who are interested in the construction industry may be hesitant to pursue it due to the lack of gender diversity in the field.
As a construction company, ensure that you are posting jobs that are gender-inclusive and show that you value diversity.
At Pepper Construction Group, 30% of employees are female. Introducing diversity has helped increase their hiring as well as profits.
Securing Millennial and Gen Z workers in the construction industry is paramount for its growth. Finding professionals that are the right for your team and bringing them onboard can be a difficult process. Placement firms can help you find the talent you are looking for and guide you throughout the hiring process.