The construction industry is deep in the midst of a severe labor shortage and employers are feeling its effects.  

The Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) recently released its 2022 Workforce Survey Analysis. The report found that 93% of firms said they’re trying to fill open positions and 91% are having trouble doing so, particularly among the craft workforce that performs the bulk of on-site construction work. Finding workers is one problem but finding skilled workers is another, making learning and development a priority. 

Training is a Solid Solution 

When ideal candidates are in short supply, switching tactics can help you fill positions at every level. Training and development are one way to do this, and many construction firms have already adopted these methods. AGC found many firms made changes in hiring, training or scheduling in the last 12 months. Forty-two percent said that the change was to initiate or increase spending on training and professional development. This strategy is a great solution to the lack of skilled workers; employers can train or upskill their staff instead of trying to find the “perfect” candidate. 

Upskilling Fills Skills Gaps 

Aside from the national labor shortage, there are three major reasons why you’re likely struggling to put together a well-rounded team. 

  • Many of your skilled workers retired. AGC has stated that 10,000 of the country’s 81 million Baby Boomers are retiring every day and will likely all be retired in 10 years. With boomers representing 41% of the construction workforce, nearly half of your talent is leaving. 
  • Young people aren’t choosing a construction career path. A report by the National Science Board found more young people are choosing higher education over learning technical skills leaving about 3.4 million technical jobs unfilled. 
  • Turnover has increased. More people have left their jobs during the pandemic, dubbing this time as the Great Resignation – and it’s not over. One in five workers plan to quit their jobs yet in 2022. Workers are seeking better pay but also more fulfillment in the workplace. 

Reskilling your employees and training new applicants can provide a solution to the shrinking labor pool. Plus, having a strong learning plan provides employees with increased competence and job satisfaction – bolstering retention and company loyalty, ultimately providing higher rates of innovation and increased satisfaction. 

But the key to a successful learning plan is offering training that meets your employees’ needs. LinkedIn found that younger generations want to learn independently, in fact, 43% of Gen Z’ers say they want fully self-directed and independent on-the-job learning. A learning management system (LMS) can help.  

An LMS Offers a Digital, Virtual Solution 

An LMS, like Arcoro’s, offers online and virtual-based training as well as aids in practical worksite training like demonstrations and on-the-job training. Plus, an LMS can track training completions and certifications for compliance. 

Using an LMS for online training provides benefits for both the employee and the employer. It offers control over the learning processes by allowing employers to assign courses and giving employees options for when and how they complete them.  

Course completions are tracked, storing a record as to which employees have completed required trainings, like OSHA certifications. Employers can assign required courses, but employees can choose to take additional courses, essential for upskilling. Putting employees in charge of their own development lets them be proactive about climbing the company ladder and keeping their skills sharp. An employee’s skills go into a searchable database, making it easy for employers to see what skills are at their disposal when bidding on jobs.  

Until the talent shortage tide flows the other way, construction companies need to rely on digital solutions that can help ensure they have a well-rounded team. Use Arcoro’s LMS to develop and deliver strong learning plans with the help of our partner, ClickSafety whose training courses are integrated with Arcoro’s LMS. Not only will you be better able to fill any skills gaps, but you’ll demonstrate your commitment to your employees. 

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