Demand for workers soars as industries struggle to fill employment gap.
Help wanted signs are springing up across many industries – transportation, construction, manufacturing – and it’s creating disruption as businesses scramble to find suitable labor. The shortage of workers is attributable to multiple factors, though there seems to be a consensus that pandemic-related benefits have given workers reason to reconsider their employment situation.
For example, truck drivers are beginning to show a preference for jobs that provide greater work-life balance, meaning long hours on the road are less preferable than a job in manufacturing or construction. According to Yahoo! Finance, major trucking company, U.S. Xpress, has increased their total pay 30% to 35% over the last 12 months in an effort to lure back drivers.
The construction industry is facing similar shocks to the system. Contractors are facing project delays because of workforce constraints, partially due to a lack of qualified candidates and partially due to pandemic-related support benefits, according to a survey by the Associated General Contractors of America. The group says 6 in 10 contractors surveyed said their projects are being delayed due to work shortages.
Here’s a round-up of news stories that touch on this labor shortage topic.
Caterpillar Inc. CEO Jim Umpleby says his company is facing supply issues due labor shortages. The equipment manufacturing giant is having a tough time getting the materials it needs to produce its products, according to Bloomberg. Umpleby says the labor constraint affecting suppliers is adding to its pre-existing supply chain issues due to the global chip shortage.
Fleet managers are calling for the easing of government restrictions on foreign operators in order to fill the current labor shortage gap. According to Financial Times, smaller trucking companies are asking to the US government to loosen or hasten visa approvals to alleviate strained supply networks.
About 700 tradeswomen are participating in a discussion designed to help them navigate persistent bias and harassment on construction sites. According to a story from Associated Press, industry leaders are fighting to change work culture in the hopes of recruiting more women into the construction sector that faces chronic labor shortages.
According to a third quarter report from the US Chamber of Commerce, almost all contractors reported some level of difficulty finding skilled workers. In Q3, however, it was 55% high levels of difficulty—a jump of 10 percentage points from Q2.
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