Women in Construction Week: State of the Industry and How Construction Technology Can Help 

 

In the traditionally male-dominated field of construction, women are steadily making strides, contributing their skills and expertise to reshape the industry. According to the latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), in 2023 women represented 1.2 million of the construction workforce, or 10.8%. That is a 0.9% decrease from 2022 statistics, showing there is still significant room for growth and inclusion. 

We’ll take a look at the current landscape for women in construction, how women can help solve the labor shortage, and ways to empower women through construction technology to excel in the industry. 

Current Landscape:

The construction industry still grapples with gender disparities, both in terms of representation and wage gaps. Breaking down stereotypes and fostering an inclusive work environment are essential steps toward leveling the playing field. With all the efforts toward training, mentorships, and marketing to women to join construction – in the office or the field – why is the industry still lagging in recruiting women? 

Solving the Labor Shortage:

The workforce shortage in construction has reached alarming numbers, with over 500K workers needed in 2024 on top of normal hiring pace. Women can play a pivotal role in alleviating this challenge. Encouraging more women to pursue careers in construction not only diversifies the workforce but also taps into an underutilized talent pool. Initiatives such as mentorship programs, targeted recruitment efforts, social media engagement, and educational outreach can help attract more women to the construction industry. 

Educating women that there are additional roles in construction beyond the field is vital. Human Resources, marketing, design, accounting, sales, software engineer – you name it, there is a role in construction for it. 

“Don’t be afraid to get into it. If it’s interesting to you and you like the different obstacles that happen every day, it doesn’t matter what any guy might think. Whether you’re in the field or in the office. We can do anything, if not better, than they can.”

Empowering Women Through Technology:

Advancements in construction technology present a unique opportunity to empower women in the field. Automation, robotics, and digital tools can help mitigate physical barriers traditionally associated with construction jobs. Wearable technologies and exoskeletons, for instance, can assist in lifting heavy loads, making certain tasks more accessible to all workers, regardless of gender. 

Additionally, the digital transformation is a priority as 81% of E&C (engineering and construction) firms are adopting mobile platforms (KPMG), opening up more opportunities for women in tech. Technology is directly addressing issues driven by the construction labor shortage, with increased efficiency and the mentality and ability to ‘do more with less’. Contech tools provide a level playing field, allowing women to showcase their skills and contribute to the construction lifecycle, irrespective of gender, and closing the workforce shortage gap. 

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Changing the Narrative:

Changing the narrative around women in construction is crucial. Highlighting success stories, promoting female role models, and celebrating achievements can inspire the next generation of women to consider careers in construction. Moreover, fostering a culture of inclusion and respect on construction sites is essential to breaking down gender stereotypes and creating a more welcoming environment. 

The current state of women in construction shows progress, but there is still work to be done. Closing the gender gap in the industry involves addressing societal perceptions, implementing targeted recruitment strategies, and leveraging technology to create a more inclusive and efficient work environment. By actively supporting and encouraging women in construction, we can build a stronger, more diverse industry for the future. 

STACK is 100% cloud-based with quick onboarding and a user-friendly interface. Our robust, open API helps streamline workflows and increase business efficiency. From preconstruction to construction, we have the lightning-fast tools you need to maximize productivity and allocate your teams where you need them, and standardizing your data within one system will help eliminate the knowledge gap between generations in the office and field. 

Top 5 Women to Watch in Construction:

Barb Allen 
Keynote Speaker, Consultant, Trainer, and Podcast Host for the Construction Industry 

Coty Fournier   
Professional Talent Development & Growth Strategy for GCs and Large-Scale Trade Partners 

Irene Walsh Garcia 
Helping Women in Construction overcome their limiting beliefs & gain the confidence they need to reach new heights in their careers. 

Karly Gibbons 
Journeyman Electrician, fun and educational social content creator 

Lydia Crowder AKA Drywall Shorty 
Drywall finisher with over 20 years of experience, weekly contributor to Build Show Network, and educational social content creator 

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