Construction Job Openings Rose by 2,000 in May

Washington, DC, July 3, 2024-The construction industry had 339,000 job openings on the last day of May, 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 2,000 last month but are down by 38,000 from the same time last year.

“While the number of open, unfilled construction positions has declined over the past year, the industry is still faced with widespread labor shortages,” said ABC chief economist Anirban Basu. “The 4.0% of construction jobs that were unfilled in May is a higher rate than in the months leading up to the start of pandemic, a time when construction labor was already scarce. Because of these shortages, a higher share of construction workers quit in May than in any month over the past year.

“Over half of contractors intend to increase their staffing levels during the next six months, according to ABC’s Construction Confidence Index,” said Basu. “As a result of this ongoing intention to hire and the lack of available workers, contractors laid off just 1.8% of the workforce in May, a smaller share than in any month on record prior to late 2021.”