Page 2 of 2

New Data Reports that Construction Employment Has Increased in 29 States

In early October, the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) released its analysis of Labor Department data on employment in the construction industry. With recent concerns about a workforce shortage in construction, the influx of jobs in the last year is a positive trend.

The analysis found that 39 states, including the District of Columbia, added construction jobs between August 2018 and August 2019, and construction employment increased in 29 states from July to August of 2019. Association officials suspect that the lack of increase in construction jobs in September of 2019 could be due to overall workforce shortages.

The shortage, it seems, could be due to the fact that there are simply not enough people to hire. The association’s chief economist, Ken Simonson, said the following: “Even more states probably would have posted gains in construction employment if firms could find enough people to hire…They are finding most craft positions hard to fill, even though average pay in construction pays is higher than the all-industry average in nearly every state.”

The following results show the trends in construction over the past year and which states showed the most adjustment.

States that added the most construction jobs from most to least. Texas added the most construction jobs over the year (43,900 jobs, 5.9%), followed by California (34,300 jobs, 4.0%), Florida (20,900 jobs, 3.8%), and Arizona (15,400 jobs, 9.7%). North Dakota added the highest percentage of construction jobs over 12 months (12.1%, 3,100 jobs), followed by Nevada (11.7%, 10,500 jobs), Arizona, and New Mexico (9.2%, 4,300 jobs). Construction employment reached a record high in Nebraska and Texas.

States that shed construction jobs over the last year from most to least. Ten states shed construction jobs over the latest 12 months, while employment was flat in Mississippi. Louisiana lost the largest number and percentage of construction jobs (-10,100 jobs, -6.6%). Other states with large job losses include Ohio (-3,600 jobs, -1.6%), Maryland (-1,600 jobs, -1%), Vermont (-1,000 jobs, -6.6%) and Connecticut (-1,000 jobs, -1.7%). Other states with a substantial percentage decline include Vermont, Montana (-2.1%, -600 jobs), Connecticut, and Ohio.

States that added the most construction jobs between July and August from most to least. Florida added the most construction jobs between July and August (4,100 jobs, 0.7%), followed by New York (3,000 jobs, 0.7%), Nevada (2,400 jobs, 2.5%), Missouri (2,300 jobs, 1.9%), and Texas (2,200 jobs, 0.3%). Nevada added the highest percentage of construction jobs for the month, followed by Missouri, South Carolina (1.8%, 1,800 jobs), New Hampshire (1.8%, 500 jobs), and Nebraska (1.7%, 900 jobs).

The AGC says contractors nationwide are brainstorming ways to combat the workforce shortage in the construction industry. Ideas for industry changes include increasing pay, expanding training programs, and setting more goals for efficiency. While they are working to mitigate the issue, they also recognize that many firms experiencing labor shortages are suffering issues with construction schedules and costs as a result.

They say they cannot combat the issue internally, though. Association officials also urged Congress to pass measures to boost career and technical education and provide a lawful way for more immigrants with skills in construction to enter the country.

"Few other jobs can match construction wages without requiring a costly college education,” said Stephen E. Sandherr, the association's chief executive officer. “Construction firms are taking steps to cope with workforce shortages, but federal officials could help by increasing investments in career and technical education, passing the Jobs Act, and enabling more people with construction experience to legally enter the U.S."

View the state employment data by rank and state. View the state map.

Download Center

  • Industrial Premium Library

    Empower your workforce with the manufacturing, industrial maintenance, operations, HSE, compliance, and professional development skills they need to complete their tasks efficiently and safely. Not only will you boost productivity, reliability, skills, and morale but you’ll also onboard faster, and retain your best employees while meeting regulatory standards. Vector Solutions offers over 1,800 award-winning eLearning courses designed to keep your employees safe, transfer knowledge of fundamentals, and develop industry and job-specific skills that reduce downtime, maintenance costs and more.

  • Safety Metrics & Insights Webinar

    EHS professionals have been tackling the subject of how to best measure performance for many years. Lagging indicators like the Total Recordable Incident Rate (TRIR) and Days Away Restricted Transfer Rate (DART) are a good place to start, but you shouldn’t forget about the leading indicators that your workforce does every day to prevent incidents from occurring. Learn about some of the most common KPIs of safety programs and how Vector EHS Management software can be used to track these metrics in this webinar.

  • Risk Matrix Guide

    Understanding the components of a risk matrix will allow you and your organization to manage risk effectively. Download this guide for details on risk matrix calculations including severity, probability, and risk assessment.

  • OSHA Recordkeeping Guide

    In case you missed it, OSHA recently initiated an enforcement program to identify employers who fail to electronically submit Form 300A recordkeeping data to the agency. When it comes to OSHA recordkeeping, there are always questions regarding the requirements and ins and outs. This guide is here to help! We’ll explain reporting, recording, and online reporting requirements in detail.

  • Safety Metrics Guide

    Is your company leveraging its safety data and analytics to maintain a safe workplace? With so much data available, where do you start? This downloadable guide will give you insight on helpful key performance indicators (KPIs) you should track for your safety program

  • Vector Solutions

Featured Whitepaper

OH&S Digital Edition

  • OHS Magazine Digital Edition - September 2022

    September 2022

    Featuring:

    • ESG
      EHS Will Guide Future ESG Success for Many Organizations
    • MACHINE GUARDING
      Handling Material Handlers: Training Beyond PIT Requirements
    • EHS SOFTWARE
      The Missing Link with EHS Software
    • HEARING PROTECTION
      Noise Surveys from the Trenches
    View This Issue