The construction industry added 23,000 new jobs in September, and the industry's workforce was 315,000 larger year-over-year, per the latest data from the Department of Labor.
The trade group Associated General Contractors of America's chief economist Ken Simonson says that the industry increased both workers and pay at a higher annual rate than the overall economy in September, “However, the pool of unemployed workers with construction experience has nearly evaporated.” MarketWatch reports that as of July 2018, there were still 273,000 construction jobs open. The average hourly earnings for construction workers in September was also higher than the average earnings of all workers, $30.18 and $27.24, respectively.
At the School of Concrete and Construction Management at Nashville-based Middle Tennessee State University, there were nearly six jobs open for each graduate of the program, and the average starting salary for graduates was $52,000. For all workers at all stages of professional life, the average pay in the area is $58,000 in the Nashville metro area, according to government data. While most graduates of the program take jobs in large construction firms, many choose to start their own companies, according to a spokesperson.