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Construction industry faces a 650,000 worker shortfall in 2022

Codes and Standards

Construction industry faces a 650,000 worker shortfall in 2022

Increase in demand expected from boost in infrastructure spending.


By Peter Fabris, Contributing Editor | March 4, 2022
Declining Construction Industry
Courtesy Pixabay.

The U.S. construction industry must hire an additional 650,000 workers in 2022 to meet the expected demand for labor, according to a model developed by Associated Builders and Contractors.
 
The 650,000 total is in excess of what is needed to keep up with the normal pace of hiring in 2022. ABC’s model uses the historical relationship between inflation-adjusted construction spending growth, sourced from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Value of Construction Put in Place survey, and payroll construction employment, sourced from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, to convert anticipated increases in construction outlays into demand for construction labor at a rate of about 3,900 new jobs per billion dollars of additional construction spending.
 
“ABC’s 2022 workforce shortage analysis sends a message loud and clear: The construction industry desperately needs qualified, skilled craft professionals to build America,” said Michael Bellaman, ABC president and CEO, in a news release. “The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act passed in November and stimulus from COVID-19 relief will pump billions in new spending into our nation’s most critical infrastructure, and qualified craft professionals are essential to efficiently modernize roads, bridges, energy production and other projects across the country.”
 
Based on historical Census Bureau Job-to-Job Flow data, an estimated 1.2 million construction workers will leave their jobs to work in other industries in 2022. This will be offset by an anticipated 1.3 million workers who will move from other industries to construction.

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