WASHINGTON, Nov. 1—The construction industry had 431,000 job openings on the last day of September, according to an Associated Builders and Contractors analysis of data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey. JOLTS defines a job opening as any unfilled position for which an employer is actively recruiting. Industry job openings increased by 56,000 last month but are down by 35,000 from the same time last year.
“The number of open, unfilled construction positions surged in September and currently stands at the highest level since December 2022,” said ABC Chief Economist Anirban Basu. “This mirrors an increase in economywide job openings which, at 9.6 million, remains about 37% higher than at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“There are, however, some signs of labor market improvement for contractors,” said Basu. “The rate at which construction workers are quitting their jobs has normalized, with just 1.8% leaving their employers in September. While that’s a welcome development, labor shortages remain a pressing issue for the industry. Contractors laid off or discharged just 1.9% of workers in September, down from 2.2% in August and 2.5% in September 2022. With a majority of contractors planning to increase their staffing levels over the next six months, according to ABC’s Construction Confidence Index, labor shortages will remain a pressing issue heading into 2024.”
Visit abc.org/economics for the Construction Backlog Indicator and Construction Confidence Index, plus analysis of spending, employment, job openings and the Producer Price Index.
Associated Builders and Contractors is a national construction industry trade association established in 1950 that represents more than 22,000 members. Founded on the merit shop philosophy, ABC and its 68 chapters help members develop people, win work and deliver that work safely, ethically and profitably for the betterment of the communities in which ABC and its members work. Visit us at abc.org.