The Summer 2021 edition of the Construction Monitor is online HERE.
More than ever, workers are looking for the choice and opportunities that come from flexible work arrangements. In construction, we have an especially intense competition for talent, along with an acute shortage of trades training spaces and escalating material prices. The result is rising construction costs and an unparalleled affordability crisis.
That’s why the B.C. Government’s recently announced return to compulsory trades is more than a head scratcher. This new certification regime will do nothing to address the need to find more workers, or any of the other real challenges facing construction contractors.
It’s a result instead of hoping that the policies of yesterday will address the challenges of today and tomorrow. And, let’s be clear, this is not about improving the quality of the work performed by B.C. construction workers. Projects are designed by the best in the world, highly regulated, effectively permitted and thoroughly inspected.
The government also announced that it will set ratios of the number of ticketed tradespeople who must work with an apprentice. This added bureaucracy fails to account for the dynamics of complex construction projects. It removes the flexibility that contractors, supervisors and workers need to get the job done, and will limit the number of workers entering the trades.
What will be served by mandating registration for apprenticeship programs when the wait list to get into schools is generally a year, often two and sometimes more? How did we end up in this place? Government failed to engage in broad industry consultation. The contracting community, including ICBA and the majority of construction associations, was simply not at the table.
We need to build better workplaces in construction, attract more people to the trades, train them more effectively and become more innovative. Instead, government is missing the mark. We can do better for workers and for contractors.
The Construction Monitor is a quarterly ICBA publication providing ahead-of-the-curve information and statistics on the BC construction industry and issues relevant to it. Check out some of our recent issues:
- NEW! Summer 2021: Building the Workforce of the Future, Today
- Spring 2021: Wellness in Construction
- Winter 2021: Wage and Benefit Survey 2021
- Special Edition: Election 2020
- Fall 2020: Rebuilding the Economy
- Summer 2020: Pandemic Effect on Construction
- Winter 2020: Wage and Benefit Survey 2020
- Fall 2019: Open Shop Dominates Training