Reshaping the Construction Industry

A ceremony held at the recently completed C3 project for the Greater Houston Partnership in Partnership Tower has the potential to impact the construction workforce in the Houston region for decades to come.

The ceremony honored the inaugural class of 17 graduates of Generation Houston, a collaboration of the Greater Houston Partnership’s Upskill Houston, United Way, and Generation, a 501(c)(3) social initiative sponsored by McKinsey & Company and other major sponsors.

The four week, fast track program was aimed at individuals who express an interest in the construction industry as a career and offers them training in life, safety, social and career skills. The United Way Thrive program provides the candidates and the screening of the individuals who are eligible for the training. McKinsey’s Generation provides the instruction.   Read more » about Generation Houston Inaugural Graduation

A 98-page report produced by Stockton University’s William J. Hughes Center for Public Policy last June presents a detailed look into the “underground construction industry” in New Jersey.  Titled The Underground Construction Economy in New Jersey, the report lists specific ways that “off-the-books labor,” also called worker misclassification, damages the construction industry, cheats the misclassified workers, and costs the state government and ultimately local taxpayers millions of dollars each year.  Best practices for dealing with the illegal practice are identified in the report, and the report concludes with 15 policy recommendations for the State.  From page 12 of the report:

“Based on the review of best practices in other states, we outline 15 policy recommendations for the State of New Jersey (page 90). Recommendations #1 through #4 are related to the structure and functions of state government entities that have duties related to employee misclassification.   Read more » about Research Report: The Underground Construction Economy in New Jersey

The following article originally appeared in the December newsletter to clients of Kiley Advisors, LLC for the purpose of providing the latest leading indicators and industry issues to those clients.  Reprinted with permission.

On November 10th, in front of thousands of attendees, Dr. Bill Gilmer, Director of the Institute for Regional Forecasting at the University of Houston, laid out his forecast for Houston in 2017. After recognizing the bumpy and considerably steep decline in the energy sector, Dr. Gilmer remained optimistic about Houston’s economy overall, feeling that the worst is likely in the rear view mirror and that Houston will begin to recover in 2017.

Dr. Gilmer outlined a series of scenarios, largely dependent on when the energy sector will rebound, with the weighted average being a loss of approximately 22,000 job growth in 2016, 4,500 jobs added in 2017 and then ramping up to 74,800 jobs in 2018 and 85,100 in 2019.   Read more » about Houston’s Monthly Metrics: December 2016

Fewer metros add construction jobs in October; Dodge, Beige Book report mixed starts

Editor’s note:  Construction Citizen is proud to partner with AGC America to bring you AGC Chief Economist Ken Simonson's Data DIGest. Check back each week to get Ken's expert analysis of what's happening in our industry.

Help AGC generate a comprehensive construction business outlook for 2017 by taking their 2017 Construction Industry Hiring and Business Outlook survey.

Construction employment, not seasonally adjusted, increased from October 2015 to October 2016 in 223 (62%) of the 358 metro areas (including divisions of larger metros) for which the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) provides construction employment data, decreased in 73 (20%) and was stagnant in 62, according to an AGC release and map on Tuesday.(BLS combines mining and logging with construction in most metros.) Two metro areas tied for the most jobs added (10,800 combined jobs): Denver-Aurora-Lakewood (an 11% increase) and Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford (17%); they were followed by Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale (9,900 construction jobs, 10%), the Anaheim-Santa Ana-Irvine, Calif. division (9,000 construction jobs, 10%) and Las-Vegas-Henderson-Paradise (8,500 construction jobs, 16%).   Read more » about AGC's Data DIGest: November 22-30, 2016

Excitement filled the air on a cool, crisp, picture perfect day when 322 students with 38 teacher/administrator chaperones from Houston-Metropolitan Area high school campuses attended the 2016 Construction Careers Exposition on Thursday, October 27, at the Pasadena Municipal Fairgrounds.  These select students represented Aldine, Alvin, Barbers Hill, Channelview, Deer Park, Galena Park, Goose Creek Consolidated, Humble, Pasadena, Pearland, and Sheldon Independent School Districts.  185 volunteers representing 33 contractors, colleges, and suppliers joined with the Associated Builders and Contractors of Greater Houston/Construction and Maintenance Education Foundation (CMEF) to sponsor and facilitate the Exposition – including the donation of resources, services, and time – to make this event happen.   Read more » about Area High School Students Experience Hands-On Activities at the 2016 Construction Careers Expo

The “private sector solution” to workforce challenges in the Houston area is growing by leaps and bounds, but there is an incredible amount of work yet to do. The Construction Career Collaborative, or C3, continues to pick up steam and more industry leaders are being asked to join what has been described as “a movement.”

During a breakfast hosted this month by the Associated Builders and Contractors of Greater Houston, C3 Executive Director Chuck Gremillion told executives the best way to create an industry that’s attractive to young American workers is through better craft training, safety training, and a focus on the financial security, health and well-being of craft workers.

“We’re really a pretty simple organization,” Gremillion said. “We want to attract young people to a career.”

While the vast majority of construction companies understand the need for safety training, which is a great thing, Gremillion said it is regrettable there aren’t more firms with a focus on craft training.   Read more » about More Construction Leaders Are Needed to “Walk the Talk” on Workforce Solutions

On September 25, 2016, Arnold Palmer died at age 87. Golf lost an outstanding champion; America a truly great citizen. He was called “the King”, not only for his 62 wins, including 7 majors, but also what he did for the game, for thousands of ordinary people, and for the community and the country. His life provides a leadership blueprint for all.

He remained, despite all his success, an absolutely authentic person. He was a blue-collar everyman, the son of a golf course superintendent and golf pro, who gave him bedrock values of respect for others and the importance of hard work – values he embraced and honored his entire life (Arnold’s dad also gave him a great grip, the most critical fundamental to the golf swing.) It is interesting that these traits and values are the hallmark of most successful contractors as well. They are humble, real, hardworking, and appreciative.

Palmer had an amazing connection with his fans. They formed Arnie’s Army, and thronged around him at tournaments. They relished his consistent hard-charging style where he would take risks his competitors would not. Risk taking resonates with contractors too; it is the heart of the business. After his playing days ended, he and pal, Joe Gibbs, started the Golf Channel, now part of NBC. His lawyers and advisors told him this deal was too risky, to which he snapped back, “If I hadn’t tried to hit it over some trees or across some ponds on several occasions, we wouldn’t be here talking.” Sound familiar?   Read more » about Lessons from the Life of the King: Arnold Palmer

to You and Yours!
Read more » about Happy Thanksgiving!

Job growth continues in 35 states; PPIs remain mild; multifamily market appears to slow

Editor’s note: Construction Citizen is proud to partner with AGC America to bring you AGC Chief Economist Ken Simonson's Data DIGest. Check back each week to get Ken's expert analysis of what's happening in our industry.

Seasonally adjusted construction employment rose in 35 states from September 2015 to September 2016, declined in 14 states and the District of Columbia, and held steady in West Virginia, an AGC analysis of Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data released on Friday showed. Iowa again led in percentage gain (13%, 10,400 jobs), followed by Nevada (13%, 9,200), Colorado (11%, 16,400) and Washington (10%, 17,300). The most jobs added were again in California (34,100 jobs, 4.6%) and Florida (28,400, 6.6%), followed by Washington and Colorado. Kansas had the steepest percentage loss (-7.6%, -4,700), followed by Maine (-7.5%, -2,000), Wyoming (-7.4%, -1,700) and Delaware (-6.0%, -1,300). Illinois lost the most jobs (-5,500, -2.5%), followed by Kansas, Kentucky (-3,500, -4.5%) and Pennsylvania (-3,000, -1.3%). For the month, employment rose in 23 states and D.C., shrank in 23 states and was unchanged in four. (AGC's rankings are based on seasonally adjusted data, which in D.C., Delaware and five other states is available only for construction, mining and logging combined.)

The PPI for final demand in October, not seasonally adjusted, was unchanged from September and increased 0.8% year-over-year (y/y) from October 2015, the BLS reported on Wednesday.    Read more » about AGC's Data DIGest: November 14-21, 2016

Hi there. The Chamberlin Man here.

This Thanksgiving, take a moment to breathe in the smell of turkey roasting in the oven and count your blessings. Now, imagine me, The Chamberlin Man, tipping my hat and raising a glass in gratitude to you, our clients and colleagues, for trusting Chamberlin with the blessing of your business for yet another year. From all of us at Chamberlin, I’d like to offer a very sincere Thank You.

We feel like it’s a great time of year to take stock of all the good in our lives at home and at work. One of the things we’re most grateful for at Chamberlin is the opportunity to give back to the communities where we live and work. In fact, Chamberlin employees collectively volunteered nearly 400 hours for a good share of nonprofit organizations in 2016. since 2007, Chamberlin is excited that WorkFaith's job readiness program is celebrating its 200th graduating classChamberlin also raised funds for Seven Loaves Community, which will result in over 200,000 meals served to those in need.   Read more » about Good Gravy!


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