construction worker

Is Being a Construction Worker in the U.S. a Worthy Job?

When looking for jobs, it is practical and sensible to search for a position that’s stable, pays well, and makes use of our skills. If one of your key strengths is in construction, you may be considering getting a job in this industry. Staffing companies that provide skilled trade job opportunities from various companies in the U.S. could be your ticket to a job that would develop or maximize your skills.

The market for construction workers is actually foreseen to grow by 12.4% from 2016 to 2026. This earns you a great chance to secure a position quickly. But how is the supply and demand for this job performing?

Construction Worker Employability

Because of forecasted growth, the United States is expected to need 157,000 construction workers. The demand is driven by new construction related to the general population growth, as well as deteriorating infrastructure and aging buildings. The Associated General Contractors (AGC) indicated that 45 states and the District of Columbia opened new construction jobs over the past year.

However, construction firms are experiencing a problem with hiring qualified workers. The labor pool is experiencing a drop, and the average age of a skilled construction worker is currently around 50 years old.

In a survey conducted by the AGC, it was shown that craft positions are most in-demand. Carpenters, sheet metal installers, and concrete workers are the hardest position to fill.

The Drop in Supply

80% of US construction firms are unable to find sufficient qualified construction workers. This labor shortage is making an impact on the government. Indefinite delays in construction projects may happen, which would result in continued deterioration of existing infrastructure and escalated costs for the maintenance of new facilities. In time, taxpayers would be burdened by higher rates.

To help more job-seekers qualify for a position, the AGC is calling for the doubling of investment in career and technical education for construction workers over the next five years. To address this issue, vocational classes in public schools may be brought back. Construction firms would like to impart to young men and women that a college degree is not the only way to have a good-paying job.

The Oregon Department of Transportation has a workforce development program with diverse training options such as carpentry, cement masonry, ironworking, labor, operating engineering, pile driving, and painting.

In Vermont, the state agency is working with Regional Career Technical Education institutions to expand their program and include plumbing, electrical, and HVAC tech training.

The AGC communicates that people who take part in vocational classes or apprenticeship programs promoted by the industry can go straight into a high-paying job, earning them lots of opportunities for career growth and development.

How Much are Construction Workers Making?

a construction worker

The pay, like most jobs, has a lot do with experience, skill, and position title and level. Top-level construction workers can earn up to $42,517 per year, whereas, for senior-level workers, it can be up to $33,921 per year. Mid-level and junior-level workers can have yearly earnings of $28,121 and $25,308, respectively. Entry-level workers can earn up to $24,111 per year. (Note that these are only general figures because actual salaries vary per state).

Construction workers with specializations make more money than general workers do. In the survey conducted by the AGC, more than half of the respondents say that they’ve raised their hourly pay rates for professional craftsmen to compete for hiring.

The demand may be at an all-time high, but it doesn’t make it easier for job-seekers in the industry. To be qualified, one must have adequate training and experience in apprenticeship. To gain an advantage in the labor market, acquire as much training as you can. It’s better if you focus on a certain specialization, as well.