This past winter has been particularly hard on the construction industry. Across the country, severe weather and a challenging economy have pinched the number of available jobs, limiting the potential for growth and putting a damper on the expectations of companies everywhere.
However, that has changed. This spring has brought about good news in addition to nicer weather, and the employment situation for the construction industry continues to improve. As jobs grow, proper indemnification, such as workers' compensation insurance, and an effective risk management plan should be top priorities for a firm. The number of work sites will start to rise as temperatures heat up, and a lack of protection could leave employees in danger.
Construction jobs start to rise
According to recent U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data, the employment outlook for the construction industry - and the country as a whole - has continued to get better as the months progress. So far, employment gains have been driven by this specific sector, in addition to professional and business services, retail trade and food services.
In April, the BLS reported that construction jobs increased by 32,000, thanks to improvements in civil and heavy engineering and residential building. Between this month and the same time in 2013, the industry has gained 189,000 jobs. Better yet, most of that growth has come recently.
Overall, this is very good news for this sector. Trends indicate that job growth is likely to continue well into the summer, which means that employers will have the opportunity to expand their businesses and connect with new clients.
BLS report is a good sign
This past BLS report comes as a sign of more positive times ahead for the construction industry. A number of industry professionals have noted that the gains in job openings should help bolster businesses for some time.
"It is heartening that all categories of construction employers added workers, not only in April but over the past 12 months," Ken Simonson, chief economist for The Associated General Contractors of America, said in a statement. "Moreover, contractors have been adding to workers' hours as well as hiring more employees."
However, the AGC's CEO, Stephen Sandherr, stated that the quantity and quality of training opportunities have to improve in order for construction companies to find skilled labor to fill these new positions. He placed the responsibility on elected officials to help simplify this process, and explained that it would be tragic if the industry struggled because of a dearth of trained workers.