Construction is feeling the effects of an extremely limited supply of skilled workers. This trend is impacting most industries across the U.S. due to a long period of record-low unemployment rates. As of April 2019, the unemployment rate was 3.6%. While inching closer and closer to full employment is one indicator of a healthy and thriving economy, it creates new and special challenges too. In the construction industry, demand is on the rise while the supply of available skilled workers continues to shrink. It may sound counterintuitive, but the current state of the industry actually makes today the best time to start a construction business.
The Construction Business Is Booming
The construction business is booming for the same reason why it’s so difficult to find skilled workers – our economy is healthy and strong. A strong economy also means demand for construction projects is high – across government, commercial and residential projects, there is certainly money to be made. According to Statista, $1.23 trillion was spent on U.S. construction in 2017. More importantly, growth is still on the rise. The American Institute of Architects (AIA) projects non-residential construction will grow by 4% this year.
Employees vs. Contractors
The lack of skilled available workers is leading many companies to consider taking on full-time employees rather than contractors. Employee agreements with important benefits including health insurance and the opportunity to learn, grow and move up in the company are excellent for attracting top-tier construction talent. As you work on your business plan, think about creative ways to attract – and retain – top talent for your construction business. You can even launch a business featuring a core set of employees joined by a rotating base of contractors.
Of course, employees are more expensive than contractors with all expenses and taxes considered, but speak to your financial team to see if employees could make more sense for your business based on the current state of the industry. The answer to that question will vary based on where you plan to open your business, how big your team will be, the corporate structure of your company and other considerations.
Develop Skilled Workers
Another solution is developing skilled workers by offering job training programs. For people interested in getting into construction who have limited or no experience, job training gives them the necessary skills to find great work for the rest of their lives and gives your business access to a wider pool of workers.
Launch with the Right Systems and Tools in Place
When you’re ready to launch your construction business, start off with tip-top organization and seamless workflows via DocuSite’s construction documentation software. You’ll only need to invest about two days for adopting the system business-wide and 15 minutes for onboarding each contractor or employee.
Launching with fully digital business will put you at a great advantage while also minimizing risk, saving time and increasing profits. From the real-time synchronization of field reports to the cloud to GPS and time-stamped on-site photo and video documentation, find out more about what DocuSite can do for your future construction business today: schedule a demo.