Percentage of Female Workers in Construction Industry Hits All-Time High

November 30, 2022

A recent Washington Post study showed that the number of women employed in the Construction Industry is at it highest level ever with 14% of all construction workers being female. Several factors are contributing to this number and as construction worker shortages continue to grow, it may be time for employers to adjust their recruitment strategies.

What’s Driving the Numbers

Earlier this year, the US construction industry reported 440,000 job openings and and construction laborers are the most in-demand jobs across the value chain in every US state. High demand combined with lower supplies of workers is also causing construction related wages to rise as employers compete to staff their projects. As wages continue to rise compared to other industries, construction jobs are becoming more attractive to female workers.

Despite female employment in construction being at a high point, females are still underrepresented in the field and offer a unique opportunity to employers looking for good employees.

According to a recent report, construction needs to add two million workers in the next three years to keep up with housing demand. By focusing more heavily on recruiting women, construction companies can take advantage of an untapped source of potential workers. The challenge for employers is attracting women to the construction industry.

“The current labor shortage is presenting an even larger opportunity for women to begin honing the skills needed to build a career in this industry,” …. “Recruiting women for construction jobs can create more diversity for a company and potentially drive performance.”

Jen Alessandra, senior vice president and chief people officer for American Home Shield

How to Attract More Women into the Construction Industry

Here are a few ideas employers should consider as they work to attract women into the construction industry:

  • Explain benefits of entering the construction industry: High wages, potential career growth and high demand
  • Highlight that the construction industry has one of the lowest gender pay gaps in the U.S
  • Job Flexibility: Skilled trades workers are likely to have increased flexibility as they progress in knowledge and experience
  • Feature the women currently in your organization: Give young women role models and mentors that can answer their questions about the construction industry

2023 promises to offer more challenges to employers looking to hire good people. As so, employers must be open to looking beyond traditional hiring practices and explore all options as they look to fill employment gaps. Hiring more women should not be overlooked.

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