HELENA — The Montana Contractors Association and others have developed a plan, Build Montana, to address the immediate and long-term workforce challenges of the construction industry.
"Build Montana is a project that we are working together with the Montana Contractors Association and the Equipment Dealers Association, to really create a better awareness of the trades and the incredible opportunities that are existing for young people to enter the construction trade," says David Smith, Montana Contractors Association Executive Director.
The association reports that the average age of a construction worker is 48. Build Montana will focus on creating a pipeline between these trades and the youth.
“There has been a strong shortage in supply of young people coming into the trades. We've done a great job of getting people interested in college, but not everybody needs to go to college because there are other careers that are out there," says Smith.
Josh Leiva, a project manager for Helena Sand & Gravel, says the company has several job openings as of May 28 and cannot find workers to fill those positions. He is a supporter of the Build Montana campaign.
"There seems to be a lack of interest currently in the construction industry. The more individuals that are interested and available...there is plenty of work. The demand for construction workers keeps going up every year,” Leiva said.
The Montana Contractors Association will hire a coordinator to bring construction professionals into school settings and inspire students to enter the trade fields.
- Working with your connections and acting on any leads from friends and family.
- Check job boards at local trade schools, colleges and job service offices.
- Consider an apprenticeship to learn while you earn.
- Check the Montana Contractors Association job bank. Click here .