With 50 percent of the existing workforce set to retire in the next decade, the demand for skilled workers in trade professions is higher than ever and quickly becoming a national issue. The sheer number of jobs needing to be filled is staggering: 3.5 million manufacturing jobs, 22,500 welding jobs in the next 5 years, 115,000 HVAC techs by 2022, the list goes on and on. Today, 45 percent of employers globally report struggling to fill skilled positions, resulting in 2 million empty roles. To combat this skills gap, the need for a larger pool of replacement workers is crucial to the survival of trade industries alike and competition to attract new workers to their respective fields is intensifying.
There is also a branding issue to overcome – today’s young people are the most technologically advanced generation to date and are resolutely set on the college and university trajectory, making it more difficult to recruit them into skilled trade jobs. Many younger generations have grown up with the pressure and direction of parents, educators and guidance counselors all touting the benefits of a college degree. All trades need to be doing more to attract and retain qualified talent by communicating the advantages of shorter, less expensive training and alternate and more direct career paths that lead to secure jobs with great earning potential and benefits.
“The timing is right for our organization to address the longstanding need for skilled workers in professional pest control. Our members have shared that the number one thing standing between their business and continued growth is a lack of workers – and when individual companies are unable to grow, the industry is unable to grow. The National Pest Management Association is taking action now to fuel and drive greater awareness around the many job opportunities, career growth possibilities and earning potential that exists in the industry today.”
— Dominique Stumpf, NPMA CEO