A Sustainable Workforce Starts With You

Danger Music

"You know what the trouble about real life is? There's no danger music." – Jim Carrey in The Cable Guy

If life were a movie, we would be hearing a soft, slightly threatening lyric in the background right now – building to a crescendo right about the time the industry begins to recover and construction projects are back on track.

Is your company focused on recruiting, training, and retaining your employees despite the downturn?  Companies who remain focused on recruiting bright new talent and developing the skills of their workforce will not only survive difficult times, but will be well positioned to take advantage of the recovery.
The workforce shortage is real.  We might be lulled by the fact that we found employees to complete our projects and so we fail to listen to the danger music that should be alerting us to the crisis ahead.

I am excited to learn of several organizations who remain focused on this issue.  Construction Users Roundtable (CURT) is one such organization.  CURT publishes a newsletter you can sign up to receive free of charge.  In the upcoming issue, CURT will publish a letter regarding their commitment to workforce development initiatives and a statement of their clear understanding of the challenges facing the construction industry if we do not begin working together to address the workforce shortage.  CURT’s Workforce Development sub-committee meets year-round on workforce issues.  One of their most innovative projects is their collaboration with the Construction Workforce Development Center (CWDC) on the CWDC Labor Supply/Demand Forecasting model.  This model is a free online tool that assists construction users in planning projects and, most excitingly, can be used to target demand areas for focused recruiting and training.

There are several exciting trends I see in our future, and I think that these websites are some of those.  I have been involved in the construction industry for a number of years and continue to be amazed at the level of commitment and the breadth of knowledge that exists within our ranks.  Our challenge is to ensure that we leave a legacy that we can be proud of.  Attending to the message behind the danger music is a good first step.

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