78% Number of construction firms struggling to hire: Construction firms are having difficulty filling salaried and craft positions. Source, Associated General Contractors of America and Sage Construction and Real Estate
143,000 number of vacant construction positions: The shortage has led to 69% of construciton firms experiencing job delays. Source, Bureau of Labor Statistics and National Association of Home Builders.
2.3 million number of lost construction jobs: From April 2006 through January 2011 the industry lost more than 40% of its workforce: Source, Bureau of Labor Statistics.
31,000 Fewer Hires: Employment in construction declined 31,000 in February 2019: Source, Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Challenge: GC's are struggling to fill the jobs and meet the demands due to the fact that the last recession decimated many of the trade workers. Many of those same skilled workers left the industry for higher education and more stable careers.
This in turn has created a domino affect on the bidding participation for projects. Instead of three to five GC bids on a project, we are seeing one to two and the normal two-week bid time has become a four-week bid time.
Solution: The solution unfortunately is a costly one for hotel owners and developers. The construction industry needs to increase wages to make jobs "marketable" to a younger generation and of course those costs will be passed down to developers. Essentially
it is making the industry attractive, appealing and more competitive to the younger generation.
Another solution could be to use available labor in a more efficient way by focusing on panelized wall construction instead of traditional framing and ultimately prefabricated construction.
However when it comes to solutions, nothing goes further than good old fashion relationship building. Collaboration is always key. If you have a contractor you trust and use often, keep them busy and you'll keep them loyal. Make them part of your family so they always know whats in your pipeline. It's a win-win.
Article from Hotel Management by Alicia Hoisington