It has been a big year for demolition companies in Oregon. In fact, the entire U.S. has experienced a 4.7 percent increase, or 330,000 net new construction jobs, between October 2017 and October 2018. Oregon alone added 10,400 jobs, an amazing record high increase in the labor pool for the industrial demolition and construction industries.
Construction & Demolition Employment News
A number of factors drive this growth, from aging infrastructure to the increased need for repairs and reconstruction following a number of natural disasters across the country, to a growing population in need for more affordable housing. These factors combine to create a hot market that is poised to grow exponentially in the coming years.
There is an “elevated backlog” of infrastructure programs that have various complex needs industrial demolition contractors could benefit from. Many old infrastructure systems will be in need of replacement, rehabilitation, or new construction. Oregon demolition contractors are uniquely poised to take advantage of a growing and hungry market. What remains now is to find a balance between the rising costs of labor while still meeting the demand for more construction and industrial demolition without losing out on profits.
Industrial Demolition Contractors Seek Skilled & Affordable Workers
The question on almost every Portland demolition contractors mind is, “How long will these good times last?” They have a point, as there are some causes for concern. It may be that the growing cost of labor and other sources of inflation may cause a slow down as it becomes more and more expensive to finance industrial demolition.
According to ABC’s Chief Economist Anirban Basu, “We also know that workers remain in high demand and that for many businesses, the greatest challenge is securing sufficient levels of human capital.”
This bodes well for workers in construction and for investors. As the demand for more construction grows, and investment in infrastructure continues, more and more workers will be needed to meet the rising demand. And, it is not just construction workers that are getting a boost in employment, “Today’s employment release reveals that the heavy and civil engineering segment added another 7,100 jobs last month and has added 52,000 jobs over the past 12 months.”
Basu adds, “One potential cause for concern is growing evidence that wages have begun to rise much more rapidly of late. That along with other sources of inflation, can be expected to push interest rates higher, which in turn, would ultimately translate into more expensive financing for construction projects and fewer construction starts.”
Further, officials from the Associated General Contractors of America, “cautioned that without new investments in career and technical education, immigration reform and swift resolution of trade disputes, labor, and materials costs will continue to climb” Chief Economist Ken Simonson agreed, saying “As contractors pay more for labor and most of the materials they use to build, construction costs will climb, potentially dampening future demand for their services”
Portland demolition contractors continue to hire people as fast as they can in order to keep up with the increased demand. Unemployment in the construction industry fell to 3.6 percent in October 2018, which is half a percent lower than the previous month and almost a full percent below the national average.
An increase in employment means an increase in capital and spending, which contributes to a healthier economy. Anirban Basu commented on this, saying, “We know that many private employers continue to view the current period as a good one for enterprise expansion. We know that household finances are in good shape, which helps support overall economic growth as well as growth in certain sectors, such as hospitality and retail trade.”