Have you noticed how fewer and fewer people know about home maintenance, renovation, and repairs? Do you remember your dad or grandfather calling a plumber to fix a leak under the sink or a roofer to replace a shingle? Today, despite video tutorials, we often find ourselves reaching for the phone to call a handyman just to replace a busted fuse. This is why that video of a dad teaching kids how to change a light bulb and fix a leaky faucet went viral. Whether for lack of time or disinterest, today’s young dads and moms barely know a thing about running, much less fixing the household.
This gap in skills trickles over to the construction industry. There is a widening skills gap in the industry, so much so that it lacks skilled people and employees. How then is the industry going to survive when only a few people have the skills needed to take it a notch higher? The answer is within the companies and organizations that make up the industry.
Why Is There a Need to Address the Skills Gap?
The demand for construction services will continue despite the coronavirus pandemic. As more people look into passive sources of income, one of the elements that they will focus on is real estate. It is a powerful tool to boost household income and secure the generations to come. Real estate investments can be passed on from generation to generation, but there’s a need to comply with the demands of the times.
The more people join the construction industry, the better the demands will be. This means that homeowners will feel comfortable looking for residential roofing services in their area because the industry can “supply,” so to speak, quality contractors to their home projects. This is all the more reason why the construction industry also has to do its part in bridging the skills gap.
Seminars and Training
Construction companies can begin offering seminars and training for those who want to enter the construction industry, either for commercial or residential. Or they can begin sending their staff to training being organized by other companies. Equipping other people with the necessary skills opens opportunities not only for your business but for them as well.
This kind of investment benefits the company because knowledge-sharing is a powerful tool that boomerangs to the organization. The construction companies can also offer this for a profit. Other businesses can pay for the seminars as long as you have proven yourself to be the expert.
The construction industry can also offer apprenticeship programs to students of engineering, architecture, interior design, and others. The combination of classroom and hands-on training will help equip people, preparing them further for work in the real world. While they learn theories in the classroom, they can also spend certain hours in a week learning from professionals directly. The knowledge they gain from the apprenticeship will empower them to carve their own niches in the industry.
The good thing about an apprenticeship is the trainee can earn while learning. Because an educational institution does not sponsor this, the trainee has control over how many hours to spend in the apprenticeship program. The more passionate the trainee is in learning about the industry, the more skills they can apply in the real world.
Educational institutions can also partner with internship programs. Sponsored and monitored by colleges and universities, internship programs will teach interns a range of skills—from management to actual labor. The best thing about an internship program is the flexibility of the program in such a way that it is up to the intern to focus on topics that interest them. If technical skills don’t interest them, then maybe the administrative side of the construction industry will.
Many students enter an internship program—whether with a stipend or not—because they start to integrate themselves into the community. They can introduce themselves to industry experts. This network can come in handy when it is time for interns to enter the real world.
The skills gap in the construction industry will hurt the whole economy, so it is important for companies, organizations, and educational institutions to be together in coming up with solutions. Training people and opening opportunities for them will go a long way. But more than that, fair and equitable compensation, as well as reasonable demands from clients, can push the agenda further. Everyone should play a role because this looming predicament will impact the lives of many.