One of the primary challenges our members currently face is a shortage of skilled workers. At last fall’s Planning Conference, we developed an eight-member task force to look at how to improve coordination between ABC and its workforce-related entities – the Gould Construction Institute (GCI) and the Merit Apprenticeship Program (MAP).
- Outreach & Recruitment
- Skilled Trades Training/Apprenticeship
- Continuing Education
Outreach to and recruitment of groups such as students, young adults, veterans, women and others that could produce a more diverse workforce was identified as a particular opportunity.
To address these issues, the task force proposed the creation of an ABC Construction Industry Workforce Council to advise the ABC and GCI boards on workforce issues and enhance communication and understanding between ABC, the Gould and MAP. The ABC and GCI board chairs will chair the seven-member board on a rotating basis. Two council board members will be from the Gould board, two will be MAP contractor representatives and two more will represent ABC contractors. Non-voting members will include the ABC President, GCI President, MAP Director, and an ABC staff member to staff the board. Moving forward, an additional staff position for education and outreach may be developed and added to the council.
This month, ABC and GCI will hold a joint board meeting to discuss approval of the new ABC Construction Industry Workforce Council, which, pending approval, is scheduled to make recommendations to the ABC and GCI boards in January.
We hope the current construction boom will be an extended one. In any case, ABC is working to provide member companies with the pipeline of skilled workers they will need to make the most of current and long-term opportunities. We are uniquely positioned in the industry. In addition to ABC being a well-established association, we have a very successful school in the Gould Construction Institute and now the growing Merit Apprenticeship Program. Our goal is to use combined resources to our best advantage.