During the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC)’s Women in Construction Week and throughout the year, BBI Construction celebrates the women who are carpenters, electricians, project managers, marketing directors, architects and other skilled workers who make our construction sites and companies more inclusive and productive.
Women are essential to BBI Construction.
33% of our team are women, including in ownership roles. Three of our BBI team are active members of the NAWIC’s San Francisco chapter. Many of the architects and our other skilled construction partners are women. Many Bay Area GC’s coordinate with Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, California State University Chico, and other colleges with construction management programs to recruit and train new staff, including women.
Construction faces skilled worker shortages.
Our female workers and staff are more important than ever. The COVID pandemic created a severe downturn and the loss of 975,00 jobs in the Spring of 2020. While the industry recovered approximately 61% of those positions by the end of 2020 and demand for residential and commercial construction is expected to increase as the nation recovers from the pandemic – experts forecast that construction will experience 12 percent employment growth over the next four years – the industry faces a very real problem of labor shortages:
80% of construction companies report difficulties in staffing hourly positions
73% of companies expect the search for hourly crafts workers will get harder
43% of companies report that staffing issues have resulted in higher bids, longer project timelines and higher than anticipated costs
Who will fill those positions?
The industry’s reality is that Baby Boomer workers are retiring in record numbers, high schools across the nation have eliminated shop class and other training courses, and Millennials and younger people have neither the training nor the inclination to enter a business based on manual labor.
Construction needs more women!
The construction industry needs to attract more women. According to NAWIC, women currently make up 9.1% of the U.S. construction workforce. Current average skilled worker pay is attractive: The industry’s average wage just topped $30 per hour last month, and can continue to increase as workers gain skills.
The Association of General Contractors (AGC) recognizes the need to attract more young people to our business. AGC has lobbied for increased funding for technical education and is launching a digital advertising campaign targeting women and minority demographic groups.
Construction companies are stepping up, too.
46% of US construction companies have expanded in-house training programs and 50% have career-building programs. Currently, these programs are mostly in larger companies of 500 employees or more, but the need is felt at every level of our industry.
Take it from BBI: Women in Construction rock!
Statistics aside, BBI Construction supports Women in Construction for the very real way in which they contribute their skills, viewpoints and experiences to our company and our industry!