February 16, 2019

Fact Sheet: The Skilled Worker Gap

The U.S. is facing an unprecedented shortage of skilled laborers:

  • 3.1 million unskilled labor jobs today
  • 2.5 million additional shortfall expected during 2017

Source: US Bureau of Labor Statistics


The Challenge

  • Dwindling interest in the trades among younger people

The Opportunity

  • Shine a spotlight on the dearth of young talent
  • Elevate trades as a career path
  • Offer more scholarships to young people interested in trade careers

The Shrinking Talent Pool

Six years in a row, employers cite skilled trades as hardest segment of workforce to staff, including:

  • 80% of construction companies
  • 84% of manufacturers

Our Aging-Out Workforce

  • 55: Average age of American skilled workers
  • Physical demands result in earlier retirement
  • Millennials aren’t picking up the slack

Why it Matters

  •       Stunts housing starts and economic growth
  •       Impedes major infrastructure repairs
  •       Reduces competitiveness
  •       Results in lost sale of building products and services


 Sources:  Manpower Group 2015 Talent Shortage Survey; Associated General Contractors of America 2015 Survey; US Manufacturing Industry

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