Why is There Demand for Construction Managers?
Four out of five organizations say they are struggling to find construction project managers. With current managers getting ready to retire, a rebounding economy, and an influx of federal funding for infrastructure repairs, the demand for construction managers is on the rise.
Construction managers oversee projects, estimate costs, acquire materials, hire workers, schedule tasks, ensure safety, and supervise construction projects onsite. Not everyone has the full range of skills, education, and training to do the work. But there are other reasons why there is such demand for construction managers:
An Aging Workforce
More than 20% of current construction managers are approaching retirement, but who will replace them? While there should have been replacement workers coming in their wake, during the 2008 recession, many construction workers left the industry to pursue other careers and did not return to the profession.
Lack of Investment and Foresight
Many companies have not invested enough in training new construction managers or encouraging both men and women to enter the profession. They haven’t offered job shadowing and or internship opportunities for high school students and they haven’t done enough to promote the profession as an interesting and rewarding career.
Federal Infrastructure Funding
In November 2021, Congress passed the $1 trillion Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act that will provide funding to upgrade the nation’s roads, bridges, railways, power lines, water and sewer systems, and airports. This will result in thousands of new construction projects that will require well-trained and experienced construction managers.
A Construction Boom
The pandemic caused a major shift in where and how people work. With people spending more time in their home, many realized that home could use some sprucing up. And while there were a lot of do-it-yourself projects at first, as people feel more comfortable letting contractors in, they will probably seek out professionals. And although construction is typically cyclical, currently a variety of market sectors are heating up all at the same time. These include construction and renovations for multi-family homes and apartments, senior and assisted living centers, healthcare facilities, and commercial office space.
While the world continues to deal with ongoing climate change effects, there is a renewed emphasis on retrofitting buildings to make them more energy efficient. Many clients want “greener” buildings that are net zero energy. This will create jobs for construction managers to oversee the installation of solar and wind energy as well as geothermal heating and cooling.
Construction Processes Becoming More Complex
Construction processes and building technologies are becoming more complex which will spur demand for specialized construction management personnel. Clients who want multipurpose and electronically controlled “smart” buildings need experts. And stricter laws regarding construction materials, safety, and environmental standards need to be interpreted and enforced by people who know what they are doing.
Typically, construction managers must have a bachelor’s degree, and they learn additional management skills through on-the-job training. Large construction firms increasingly prefer candidates with both construction experience and a bachelor’s degree in a construction-related field. You will also stand out from the crowd if you obtain a Certified Construction Manager (CCM) certification, offered through the Construction Management Association of America.
At National American University, we offer a Bachelor’s degree in Construction Management that will help prepare you for a rewarding career. Do you already have some experience or a certificate in a construction or business field? You may be able to transfer those credits to your degree program so you can start ahead. Call 800-209-0182 to speak to a counselor or fill out the form to request more information.