AGC: Construction employees hard to find
Group calls on government to boost training programs
Finding skilled workers is not getting any easier, according to a survey from the Associated General Contractors of America.
Two-thirds of the 1,459 member companies surveyed by the AGC say they are having trouble finding workers to fill hourly positions, despite adjusting pay and benefits. This labor shortage could affect the growth of the U.S. economy, officials added.
"With the construction industry in most of the country now several years into a recovery, many firms have gone from worrying about not having enough work to not having enough workers," said Stephen Sandherr, the Associated General Contractors’ CEO. "These shortages have the potential to undermine broader economic growth by forcing contractors to slow scheduled work or choose not to bid on projects, thereby inflating the cost of construction."
Of the respondents who said they were having trouble finding craft workers, those in the Midwest said the problem was the most acute, with 77 percent of firms reporting difficulties. The South was close behind with 74 percent off companies experiencing difficulties.
Sanderr said government officials should boost funding for vocational education and overhaul immigration laws to help meet future demand.