Construction jobs declined nearly three times as much during the last recession than it did during the 1981 recession. This was also due in large part to many workers retiring or going into different related fields and lines of work. Now that construction is picking up again, there is a skilled labor shortage that is concerning.
Rigging is one of those skilled trades that is struggling to find qualified personnel. The labor shortage is enough of a concern that some developers and large construction companies are cautious when making commitments for large projects. The skilled labor shortage can have a serious effect on overall project cost, schedule and quality.
Rigging requires crane operator training, heavy equipment training (with various types of machinery), safety training, equipment maintenance, knowledge of physics, geometry, electrical and mechanical as well. Equipment and materials cannot get to their destination, set in place safely and on time without rigging and riggers. Which is why a skilled Rigger is in high demand in almost any location.
It's unfortunate that many of the young people in America have looked away from skilled trades as unemployment is high for young adults. Many experienced Riggers can earn a good six-figure salary in major cities from New York to Los Angeles. Rigging requires 4 to 5 years of apprenticeship and study, while working with an experienced rigging contractor.
The good news is that after many years of recession, things are finally looking up. The not-so-great news is that we are in dire need in the workforce for experienced construction professionals. The laws of supply and demand will pay accomplished Riggers higher salaries which will raise prices accordingly. The lesson for the rest of us is to not look away from skilled trades, but to look towards them.
R. Baker & Son All Industrial Services, a Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) in business since 1935, is a premier specialized contractor operating in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico, with over one hundred employees and an exemplary safety record (we have been directly involved in four sites that received VPP OSHA Safety Awards). R. Baker & Son is financially strong, with bonding capabilities over $10 million. Capabilities include industrial and commercial demolition, rigging, machinery- and plant-moving, dismantling, decommissioning, plant and equipment relocation, interior demolition, selective demolition, warehousing, wrecking and razing, millwright, plant reconfigurations, heavy rigging, salvage, environmental services, remediation, decontamination, abatement, and investment and asset recovery.
R. Baker & Son All Industrial Services
1 Globe Court
Red Bank, NJ 07701