Recruiting Strategies #2: How the Skilled Trade Shortage May Affect Your Hiring

When many people hear the term “skilled trades” their minds go toward low-wage jobs for high school kids who couldn’t hack college and settled for a no skill required, easy future. However—while that stereotype couldn’t be further from the truth—it has managed to keep millions of young adults from pursuing rewarding, lucrative careers; and the lack of candidates entering the trade is being felt in all the trades across the country. A recent report noted that California is spending $6 million on a push to revive the reputation of vocational education, and $200 million to improve the delivery of it. They are not alone in this effort.

Further compounding the problem of a lack of new tradespeople entering the market, the current trade population is at an average of 46–55 years old with a work life length of 55–60 years old, resulting in a rapid dwindling market of trained and qualified tradespeople. According to recent U.S. Census data, the share of workers in the trades who are 24 years or younger declined nearly 30% between 2005 and 2016.

Finally, combine the above challenges with the COVID crisis, and we have an industry that is suffering an unprecedented shortage of plumbers, electricians, and HVAC technicians.

Many companies are looking for unique ways to fill the gap in candidates. One common method trending is a “build your own” style of hiring. This is a way to attract those younger candidates who want to have a career in the trade and need an entry. Apprentice programs are a great way for companies to teach and train these people the way they want their customers serviced, creating the workforce they want from the ground up.

Another way we see companies tackling the lack of skilled tradesmen is through partnering with local trade schools. This is a great opportunity to get in on the ground floor with those students once they have completed the necessary schooling to give them the hands-on experience they need.

A good recruiting company like Work With Your Handz not only understands the labor market and the challenges, but our dedicated, experienced recruiters know how to navigate this barren candidate arena. We know what it takes to identify and incentivize tradespeople, and where to find them. Our team also works with you to build and advertise your brand, which is critical in identifying and hiring in-demand trade professionals. Finally, our team is passionate about partnering with you to help your business grow and affect change that will bring back the trades as highly sought after, life-long careers. We understand the skilled trades shortage and have proven methods to find the candidates you need.

Recruiting Strategies #2: How the Skilled Trade Shortage May Affect Your Hiring


Dana Hubchen


Skilled Recruitment for Skilled Trades

We get to know your business, culture and needs. Work With Your Handz can help your team free up their time by providing interviews with only the most qualified candidates.