How Many Construction Workers Does Michigan Need?


In the fall of 2017, Michigan Construction issued its first industry report, Michigan Construction By the Numbers, a breakdown and analysis of the current state of the industry. We broke data down by industry subsectors and occupational categories, tracked through the lost decade, and laid it all out for industry stakeholders. The extensive data in this report helps us better understand the full extent of the workforce problem we are facing today.  In our 2018 Workforce Forecast we establish Michigan needs 9,000 new construction workers a year. 

Now we've taken our analysis a step further, looking into how many workers the construction industry needs. We overlaid Michigan Bureau of Labor Market Information and Strategic Initiatives (MILMI) data with insider information on large-scale and mega products coming down the pipeline. Real-time information provides for a richer and more accurate projection than analysis of MILMI data alone. 

We need to understand how our workforce development efforts are stacking up in the face of growing infrastructure needs, economic rebounding, and the next generation coming into the workforce. The Michigan Construction 2018 Forecast is an important part of figuring that out. To get all the data, download the full report.

Key Takeaways:

  • Maintenance and repair workers are the most in-demand in the coming decade, followed by construction laborers.
  • The shortage in affordable housing is an impediment to Michigan's economy recovery, but a solution will exacerbate the labor gap faced by residential builders.
  • Construction lags behind and competes other key industries for workers:  food preparation, healthcare and manufacturing.
  • 10:1 candidate to worker ratio means that Michigan's construction industry needs to attract 90,000 people a year to fill forecasted openings. 

Are you worried about hiring enough people for next week's job? When you're in the middle of any sort of a shortage, it's tempting to just focus on getting through--the day, the month, the year. But in order to come up with a real plan to fix the workforce problem, we need a long, clear look to determine if we are tracking in the right direction. Take a look at this forecast, and let's get to work.


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