This year’s start to the construction season was a carbon copy of last year’s; an abnormally long cold winter delayed the construction industry from ramping up into full gear. In fact the start of the season wasn’t just delayed but it was almost nonexistent with homeowners having almost no motivation to start any projects. It wasn’t until later into the spring that the phones starting ringing and plans started being submitted to townships for new homes and renovations.
This left a lot of people looking for work in the late winter to early spring, a lot of those people are still looking for full time positions with companies.
The residential construction industry overall has changed a lot in the last decade, companies are hiring less people overall then they ever did before. Construction companies are moving towards fewer employees and filling the gap with more and more sub contractors. This makes the construction company more of a management company then an actual construction company.
The reason for the move away from employees is because of the rising cost of employee’s with safety training, benefits and plethora of other costs. This drives the overhead of the company up and eventually makes them too expensive to be competitive. Homeowners have come to expect lower prices which means that the only way to compete is to hire sub-contractors.
Where this trend affects hiring trends is that young people with little to no experience cannot get hired by a general contractor and enrolled in the apprentice program. This will have a major affect going into the future as there will be less young qualified and licensed carpenters.
The affect is already being felt as young willing workers cannot find apprenticeships and have to either find a new trade or work for sub contractors that don’t qualify for the apprenticeship programs and they only train in one certain skill like framing or finishing and not a complete general carpentry which is needed.
As the summer nears and the weather finally starts to warm up more construction projects will come available, this will be good for employment in the construction industry but the later start will allow construction companies to spread out their workloads so that they don’ t have to hire as much labour as they usually require.
As was the trend last year a lot of the people that are looking for work in the construction industry are young and have little to no experience. The applicants that have experience have experience from many different companies and usually from many different fields of work not just construction.
Today it is hard for a construction company to keep young people employed the entire year, this requires them to be always looking for another job when the job they are working at ends and/or the season changes. Residential construction slows down in the winter, usually most people end up looking for work all winter into the spring.
As the entire workforce in the construction industry gets another year older we come ever closer to 2020 when the bulk of the construction workforce will have retired with little to no qualified and well trained employee’s to take their places.
Village Builders Inc.