A new report from PricewaterhouseCoopers estimates the global construction market will develop to $15.5 trillion by 2030, an increase of 85 percent of construction output worldwide. The United States is poised as one of the frontrunners in the construction boom, along with China and India. This serves as a positive outlook for the U.S. after suffering a loss of more than 2 million construction jobs following the housing market collapse that paved the way for the Global Financial Crisis of 2008. Since then, more than 1 million construction jobs have returned to the U.S. But labor shortages still plague the industry.
Running out of workers
In March of this year, Teletrac Navman conducted a telematics benchmark survey to identify insights into construction telematics use around the globe. Fifty-five percent of respondents from construction companies and the mining, oil and gas industries claim payroll to be their largest business expense area.
Fluctuations in the labor force can create challenges to maintain a steady payroll system. However, labor shortages “are the consequence of a series of policy, education, demographic and economic factors that have decimated the once robust education pipeline for training new construction workers,” said the Associated General Contractors of America.
after jobs disappeared during the recession, many construction workers either left the profession to pursue other careers or an alternative education. Many foreign-born workers returned to their homelands and stayed as economic circumstances improved and immigration policies tightened.
How companies are combating the labor shortage
Additional findings from the survey found more than 90 percent of construction companies around the globe plan to invest in their businesses in 2017. Upgrading fleets and recruiting, retaining and training talent stand at the top of the investment list. The survey also found 53 percent of respondents are addressing worker shortages by increasing pay, 36 percent are developing educational and training programs and 33 percent are offering better benefits.
A young workforce
With millennials accounting for more than half of the American workforce, traditional construction positions might not attract the young talent pool. Organizations of today can’t ignore the opportunity to attract the next generation of workers necessary for their industry. Job seekers are looking for more than an opening for a position. They are looking for technology, safety, training and a strong company culture – among other things – to feel passionate about the organization they represent. This does not come cheap for companies. Consistent with survey findings, respondents claim managing costs is their top business challenge in 2017.
For all the latest construction trends and telematics best practices, check out the 2017 Teletrac Navman Telematics Benchmark Report: Global Construction Edition. Submit the form below and the report will be available for download in your email inbox.