Forty-percent of contractors nationwide report that they have turned down jobs this year because they don't have enough skilled blue-collar workers. In Florida, over one-third of contractors say they would add 25 more employees this year if they could recruit qualified candidates.
The labor crunch isn't confined to construction. Overall, half of all Southwest Florida employers say they are having difficulty hiring enough blue-collar employees to fulfill the increasing demand from customers. This includes truck drivers, plumbers, HVAC technicians, electrical workers, machinists, metal workers, landscapers, janitors, and mechanics.
SWFL business owners can benefit from a study by The North Carolina Works Commission. The NCWC found that the recruitment efforts of many employers in that state are failing because they depend on hiring strategies from a time when qualified candidates were plentiful.
These failing strategies include posting on job boards like Monster and Indeed; publishing employment ads in local newspapers; and pleading on social media pages. Some small business owners still depend on hanging help-wanted signs.
What many local business owners on the west coast of Florida have discovered is that the best way to recruit blue-collar workers is by advertising on Fort Myers radio stations.