The electrician shortage in the U.S. is only getting more pressing. Commercial projects and the increase in green energy jobs both demand a larger number of electrical workers than the country currently has. The shortage has resulted in electricians being in higher demand and increasing their wages accordingly. How can your business address this?
What Are the Numbers?
Both the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the National Electrical Contractors Association agree that every new year creates an additional shortage of 3,000 electricians. There are 7,000 new electricians that enter the field every year, while 10,000 leave it. At the same time, the need for electricians will increase by 10% in the next decade.
Electricians are retiring faster than new ones enter the field. The field shrank with the recession a decade ago and never fully recovered its ability to replenish new numbers. An entire generation saw contract laborers and skilled tradespeople out of work during the recession and perceived the field as unreliable. As coronavirus freezes non-essential construction projects and puts people out of work once more, yet another generation is seeing these trades as less stable than generations before them did.
This presents opportunities for electrical workers in the long run. The average annual salary for electricians is more than $55,000, and the top 10% of jobs now pay more than $90,000, according to PayScale.
How to Solve a Shortage of Electrical Workers
Construction businesses should foster the interest of tomorrow's electrical workers. If you're paying your electricians well, highlight this fact. It will help attract more young people to the field.
Many programs supply guaranteed jobs upon their completion of an apprenticeship or training program. You can provide one of these jobs. Some electricians attend trade schools. It's a good idea for businesses to create scholarships that help the electricians of tomorrow attend technical schools.
Be proactive about finding and working with electricians. Maintain good relationships with the ones you've already worked with. Keep open lines of communication even when they're not currently on one of your jobs. When electricians have their option of jobs, they'll often choose based on relationship and your dependability, and not just what they can charge.
The most important step you can take to deal with an electrician shortage today is to work with a skilled labor staffing agency like Labor For Hire. Skilled staffing agencies tend to cover large geographic areas and have reach that your business may not. Their businesses are built around creating and maintaining connections between companies, tradespeople, unions, trade schools, and other resources. They can be invaluable tools in streamlining the search process and taking the administrative side of hiring off your plate.
>> Contact Labor For Hire today for your skilled labor staffing needs.