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As jobs go unfilled, organization rebrands construction work to bring in more talent

two construction workers
Elvert Barnes
Flickr / http://michrad.io/1LXrdJM
Construction jobs are now in demand in Michigan.

The Next Idea

Michigan and other states are having an increasingly hard time finding qualified people to work in construction. The perception that construction careers are dirty, hard, and dangerous plays a big part in the labor shortage.

Brindley Byrd, executive director of the Michigan Construction Foundation, wants to help people find careers in construction by marketing the Michigan Construction "brand" and connecting people to resources like educational training programs.

During the Great Recession, Byrd said, Michigan’s construction industry lost hundreds of thousands of workers, but today all of that has changed. Construction is booming in Michigan in housing, road builders, and the commercial sector.

“So many times we hear from our partners: we cannot take on more work because we can’t find more labor,” Byrd said. 

Listen below for the full conversation with Brindley Byrd.

The Next Idea is Michigan Radio’s project devoted to new innovations and ideas that will change our state.

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