Over the past decade, about 79,900 electrician job openings have been reported each year. During the past couple of years, the number of electricians — and skilled tradespeople in general — entering the trade has not replaced the number who retired. In fact, about 7,000 new electricians join the field each year, while 10,000 retire from it. Labor concerns due to the pandemic only accelerated this trend.
Commercial, industrial, and healthcare starts managed to increase spending on projects throughout 2022 despite other construction markets experiencing a downturn. It is expected that in 2023, all major commercial, industrial, and institutional sectors will see healthy growth, meaning the demand for commercial electricians will only increase.
If you’re one of the many companies struggling to fill trade positions, read on to understand why electricians are so hard to find and how a credible electrician staffing agency can help you staff your projects.
The Challenges of Finding Top Commercial Electricians
As mentioned above, the top challenge when it comes to staffing electricians for your projects is the fact that there simply aren’t enough well-trained or licensed electricians to fill the job openings. This makes for a more competitive recruiting environment than ever. Some other challenges facing companies seeking to hire electricians are the rate of retirement among current, seasoned electricians; lack of overall interest in joining the trades; and increased demand for electricians across multiple industries.
Electrician Merit Shop Construction Plans
Merit Shop Associations like Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) and Independent Electrical Contractors (IEC) are aware of and alarmed by the labor shortage in the commercial electrician market. To help solve the problem, these associations continue to strengthen their apprenticeship programs, highlighting the benefits of a career as an electrician or tradesperson.
Their virtual and in-person training offers plenty of options for incoming elections to learn. The IEC Apprentice Program even advertises benefits like learning while you earn, a top-notch curriculum, the option to earn college credit, and no student loans. These apprenticeship options are enticing for top talent in a volatile world.
The Effect of the Shortages
The electrician shortage has many effects on the overall construction industry. First, when there aren’t enough electricians on hand, project delays follow. As with anything in peak demand, qualified electricians have become more valuable, meaning the costs to hire and maintain them are increasing, which in turn raises service costs on commercial projects.
Some other effects of the electrician shortage are:
- Lower hiring standards. When there are fewer qualified candidates available, many companies are forced to hire less qualified candidates. This can lead to lower customer satisfaction and, ultimately, fewer job contracts.
- Higher training costs. Hiring electricians who have less experience means more time, money, and resources go into training them.
- Lower morale. With fewer overall tradespeople, existing electricians must pick up the slack. Longer hours and more workload can lead to burnout and overall lower morale.
Top Staffing Company as a Solution
You don’t have to tackle this labor shortage alone. Professional recruiting services and trade networks are available to help ease the burden of filling labor holes in a tight market. One of the best ways to cope with the electrician shortage is by hiring a reliable, qualified third party that has a focus on electrician staffing to fill your job sites.
Expansive Network of Current Commercial Electricians
Tradesmen International®’s contingent construction staffing solutions are designed to help you staff your job site with highly qualified electricians while at the same time improving workforce productivity and reducing labor costs. With a nationwide talent pool of over 1.7 million trade professionals, Tradesmen International® is prepared to do the screening and vetting work for you, cutting down on recruiting and labor costs.
Tradesmen International® focuses a great deal of their recruiting resources on electrician staffing, supporting contractors with helper, apprentice-level and journey-level electricians. They also provide electrician staffing expertise helping to find and provide their clients licensed electricians that meet each state’s particular guidelines.
Strategies To Optimize Talent
Since a recession is a possibility heading into the year, your team needs to be flexible in size so you can match the ebb and flow of construction demand. Tradesmen International® provides a CORE+Flex labor staffing strategy that is built to raise workforce productivity in tough times. Designed to help contractors run lean staffing solutions composed of their core full-time workforce, the CORE+Flex strategy starts with a no-cost labor productivity consultation.
Let Tradesmen International® Help Source Talent Today
Actions are being taken nationwide to address the shortage of commercial electricians, including increased access to training, and outreach to unemployed populations. Even so, the labor shortage isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. Tradesmen International® is here to help you with your electrician staffing, to boost workforce productivity, cut down on costs, and better serve the contracts you already have. To find out how Tradesmen International® construction staffing solutions can help with your labor needs, contact them today.