Out of all the American job industries, construction is evolving rapidly. Not only are there fewer jobs than ever, but there are even fewer workers stepping up to fill those positions. Beyond that, technology is helping shape the future of this industry. Read on to learn more about the state of the American construction industry today, and what that could mean for you.
Fewer Jobs, Less Skilled Workers
In the past couple of decades, the construction industry has seen a loss of millions of jobs. This being the case, you would assume that there would be plenty of workers lining up to fill those available positions, but it seems like this is not the case. In fact, there are nearly 200,000 unfilled jobs across the country. This number will likely increase as more and more building projects are in the works.
This current labor shortage is a result of many life-long construction workers nearing retirement age and exiting the job market. Developers and contractors are now looking for new ways to meet their demands – and to save money and time along the way. Which brings us to the next point.
Technology Is Stepping Up
A lot of investment has recently been made in advanced technology like artificial intelligence and drone usage in the construction industry. This definitely has helped curb the impact of labor shortages. But, even more so, it has allowed work to get done faster and at a higher quality.
Many contractors are using drones to create highly accurate models of projects, or computer programs to project costs or timelines. These are jobs that previously used to take multiple workers a significant amount of time to accomplish. Not only is this technology able to complete these tasks faster, but they tend to be much more accurate.
Additionally, technology has been able to take over some of the menial tasks that humans used to do. Unskilled, repetitive labor can literally be programmed into a machine. So, instead of a foreman managing the work of a dozen laborers, they now just have to oversee one or two automated bulldozers.
What Does the Future of Construction Look Like?
So, does this mean that you should not be pursuing a future in the construction industry? Not necessarily. In fact, there is a lot of opportunity – especially when it comes to skilled positions, which is still seeing a labor shortage. Plus, the number of building projects are only continuing to grow.
There is also tremendous opportunity when it comes to working with some of the new technology that is still being developed. Many of these machines still require a human counterpart, and there will be a growing demand for individuals who are familiar with working with them. Plus, future building projects will start to demand this higher level of technology.