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Advice From Tradeswomen: How Construction Companies Can Recruit and Retain More Women Workers

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Women in Construction

Advice From Tradeswomen: How Construction Companies Can Recruit and Retain More Women Workers

The share of women in construction is steadily rising, but according to those working in the skilled trades, addressing these problems with the recruitment process could bring in an even larger pool of talented, diverse workers

March 9, 2023
Woman engineer in factory
Image: KPs Photography / stock.adobe.com

The construction industry is facing a severe shortage of skilled labor, one that’s worsening as workers begin to retire from the industry at a much faster rate than new people are being hired. With demand for workers at an all-time high, women are rising to the occasion in record numbers, but compared with men, their presence is still far more limited, Construction Dive reports.

Women currently make up 14% of the overall construction workforce, and while that share is at a record high, construction companies could recruit even more women simply by implementing new measures to support them in their respective careers. According to a new survey from the nonprofit National Center for Construction Education & Research, that begins with eliminating discrimination and sexual harassment in the workplace and bias in the hiring process.  

Bias in the hiring process: Despite the high demand for workers, gender discrimination in hiring is still alive and well, respondents said. Companies often require a recommendation before they interview for a position — a practice that disproportionately hurts women, who are less likely to already know someone in the field. To address this, employers must ensure consistent hiring practices.

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