by Tyler Craig
The construction industry is facing a serious challenge. Its workforce is aging faster than any other industry in the country, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), and construction companies nationwide are looking to fill multiple positions. Companies are desperate for new talent because employees who have been with them the longest are transitioning out, and there is not an adequate pipeline of new candidates to take their place.
The BLS numbers tell the story. In 2002, 11 percent of construction workers were 55 and older, which increased to 20.7 percent by 2015, according to the Current Populations Survey. In 2005, 10.7 percent of workers were between 20 and 24, but that number declined to 7.3 percent in 2015. In July 2016, there were 214,000 construction job openings, according to the BLS, and the industry is projected to add 790,400 jobs by 2024.
These trends suggest that approximately 20 percent of all construction workers will retire during the next 10 years, and a total of 12 percent will be leaving the industry within the next five years. There’s one group that industry leaders are hoping will turn this situation around—the millennials.