Prince Edward Island will see continued investment in utilities and commercial, industrial and institutional building projects over the next decade or so, and construction employment will grow beyond record levels.
That’s a key finding in the Construction Sector Council’s (CSC) latest forecast of workforce supply and demand: Construction Looking Forward, 2012 to 2020 Key Highlights for Prince Edward Island.
The forecast says that in the short term, job gains in the non-residential sector will help to offset weaker conditions in new housing construction, and in road, highway and bridge construction. It notes, however, that both residential and new highway work will return later in the outlook scenario.
“Employers, human resource planners and trainers are keeping a close eye on these and other shifting labour requirements,” says Grant MacLeod, co-owner of Sherwood BMR.
“The information in these reports is very helpful as it allows us to assess when and where workers will be needed and plan ahead. Our goal is to sustain a skilled, specialized and experienced construction workforce.”
The construction labour force is estimated to rise by almost 400 workers from 2012 to 2020 in response to increased construction activity. In addition, new entrants will be required to replace the estimated 1,100 workers that are expected to retire. Industry will need to recruit 1,500 workers over the next decade to meet industry demand requirements.
“Recruiting new workers will be difficult in some years, especially with looming retirements, as well as competition from projects in other provinces and the potential impact of the federal shipbuilding contractin Halifax, Nova Scotia,” says Ross Barnes, general manager of the Construction Association of PEI.
“Steady investment in apprenticeship, career promotion and recruiting that target youth, immigrants, women and other industries, is key to meeting our needs and sustaining our workforce,” he adds.
Each year, the CSC releases nine-year scenario-based labour forecasts following consultations with industry leaders, including owners, contractors and labour groups, as well as governments and educational institutions.
The national and regional reports will be available online at www.csc-ca.org this spring. Forecast data is also available at www.constructionforecasts.ca.