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Skilled trades report lists toughest to recruit; construction growth fuels demand

January 22, 2019

Of the 10 skilled trades occupations, plumber/pipefitters are the most difficult to recruit, according to Staffing Industry Analysts’ 2018 Skilled Trades Staffing Benchmarking Survey — Summary Report

On a scale from one to five, with five being most difficult to recruit, plumber/pipefitter garnered a score of 4.5, followed by HVAC technicians and welders, both at 4.0. When asked about factors that affected demand, many survey respondents cited the tight labor market as both a demand driver and inhibitor.

Plumber/pipefitters also had the longest median assignment length at just under 11 weeks, according to the research.

In the first half of 2018, the median staffing average bill rates for plumber/pipefitters was $29.63, and their median average pay rate was $18.37.

Demand for skilled trades workers is being fueled in part by overall job growth in the construction sector of the economy, one of the largest industry sectors that employs skilled trades roles, according to Timothy Landhuis, SIA’s director of research, North America, who discussed the research in an Industrial Staffing Report article.

The report examines the skilled trades staffing market segment as a whole, and provides a more detailed look at key occupational groups that comprise the segment. SIA corporate members can download the full report online.

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