Every construction company is feeling the pressure of the current construction talent shortage. Some companies are even losing bids, because they simply don’t have the skilled laborers and construction managers to complete the project in the desired time frame. This is no way to run your business, but what can you do? Some constructions companies are thinking outside the box and encouraging those who left the industry during the housing crash to return or encouraging those who might think of retirement to stay.
Skilled Laborers Didn’t Want To Go, But They Had To
Many skilled laborers, managers, construction executives, and in-office construction professionals left the industry during the housing crash of 2008. They didn’t leave because they wanted to, but because they simply couldn’t find sustainable work. Some sought early retirement, but most took up a new career.
A Lot Has Changed Since The Housing Crash
It wasn’t easy for tenured construction professionals to leave their trade of choice, but necessity required many new and tenured laborers to make a career change. Some may be nervous about the thought of returning to the construction industry, not only because it failed them once, but also because of the rapid advances in technology since they left.
In the last 10 years, there have been massive advances in software, mobile electronics, business information modelling (BIM), sustainable building, and corporate social responsibility. If that’s not enough, finding and applying for jobs is almost completely electronic.
You May Need To Make First Contact
Even if the thought has crossed their minds these former construction professionals may be reluctant to apply. This means you may need to be the one to reach out and encourage their return. While there will need to be time invested in getting them back up to speed, that is far easier than training and achieving efficiency in the skill they already possess.
You may also benefit from their new transferable skills and even from their expanded professional network. It never hurts to flip through your database to see what your former key players are up to now or partner with a construction recruiter to discuss sourcing from this talent pool, who may not actively be searching for jobs in the construction industry.
Don’t Underestimate Your 60+ Candidates—Not Everyone Is Ready To Retire
While Baby Boomers are reaching retirement age, not all are ready to retire. Americans are living longer and are more active and engaged in their 60s, 70s, and 80s than ever before. By turning to seasoned professionals, you can take a proactive approach to the current construction labor shortage and staff your Project Management, Superintendent, and Executive positions with top talent.
Your Seasoned Workforce May Outlast Your Younger Talent
A common concern is that seasoned professionals over the age of 60 aren’t a good investment in terms of tenure. However, the average Millennial has four jobs by the time they are 32 years old. This means your older hire is likely to be more reliable, loyal, and productive. As a tenured professional, they also understand the need for long days on site, which many Millennials find unappealing.
Last but not least, your 60+ workforce can model the work ethic required to establish your construction company as a quality brand. If you would like to explore mixing full or part-time seasoned professionals and skilled laborers into your construction team, reach out to The Birmingham group today to discuss your staffing strategy.