Heres an interesting article I found the in Miami Herald, here are a couple of things I agree with:
Like the article states the key to reversing this labor shortage is education and training starting in the high schools and junior colleges. If calculus and writing papers isn’t your thing, training in trades would be a great alternative. The training program in Miami sounds better than anything I’ve seen or heard of here in Southern CA. For an employer to train someone might cost $40k -$50 a year and it might take 3 years to get a return on your investment. That’s a huge risk for the employer. Some sort of internship program through the local HS or JC could help mitigate that cost.
I would love to see a poll of men and women between the ages of 16-20 who are actually considering going into the trades? Young people these days are looking into the tech world for good-paying jobs. The standard of living in CA is much higher than Miami if you make $70K in Southern CA it’s really hard to afford a home. 70K in Florida goes a long way to buying a home. Tradesman are living outside of the area work in Southern CA because they can’t afford the home prices.
The other problem I see is the Generation X and Yers didn’t grow up playing in the dirt building forts or go Carts. They grew up playing games on a device. This new generation isn’t used to the hard work outside, in a hot attic or in a crawl space under the house. They don’t want to get their hands dirty. The other alternative that I see is to start to recruit women in the trades. This labor shortage isn’t going away and if we want to plan for the future we can increase our labor pool by 50% if women started to pursue work in the trades.
The labor shortage is not only in Miami, its here in Southern Ca too. Every contractor that I talked to complains about the same thing, lack of experienced, talented, technicians. When the economy is humming, the employee has the power, not the employer. It would be great if the CSLB would create an ad campaign through commercials and social media to start creating interest for kids to think about a “Cool” career in the trades.