Ken Simonson, chief economist for the Associated General Contractors of America, said that North Carolina has lagged other states in its construction employment recovery, and it’s not benefiting from the two major sectors boosting construction jobs in other parts of the country — fracking and downstream oil and gas work, reports Charlotte Business Journal.
Nationally, contractors are optimistic about 2014, with few planning to lay off workers and more contractors planning to hire — a trend that’s reflected in North Carolina, according to the AGC’s 2014 construction employment outlook.
But while there’s increased optimism, the industry has yet to return to pre-recession levels of activity and employment, notes Stephen Sandherr, CEO of the association.
In North Carolina, 100% of contractors surveyed said they planned to add five or fewer employees in 2014, and none had plans to lay off workers, the report showed.
But 28% of the contractors said they were having difficulty filling craft worker positions, and 50% said they expect it to be more difficult to find and hire those skilled workers in the coming year.