'We need to get the message out that there are thousands of well-paid, rewarding jobs'
A consortium of construction associations in Ontario has commissioned a 50-part video series to highlight the opportunities available to young workers in the province, with a focus on job satisfaction among workers.
"We need to get the message out that there are thousands of well-paid, rewarding jobs that will be available for young Ontarians in the coming decade," says Richard Lyall, president of the Residential Construction Council of Ontario (RESCON), part of a coalition.
The associations claim that every Ontario guidance counsellor office should have three display walls: one for universities, one for colleges and one for skilled trades.
"On that third wall, the wall for the skilled trades, there should be a monitor so that young people can watch dozens of fantastic two-minute video profiles of people telling their stories about their construction careers on the Job Talks website," says Lyall.
The video profiles feature young people “who embrace construction for its highly satisfying careers and enjoy the challenges of problem-solving on the spot,” says Jon Callegher, executive director of Job Talks, a work-related media and research company that promotes careers in the skilled trades.
Larissa North, a bulldozer operator, is one of those featured in the series.
"The fact that I get to be outdoors every day is really nice, but what I really like is that every day is different," she says. "Some of the skills that make me a good bulldozer operator are that I'm detail-oriented and I'm always asking questions about operating the machine and how roads are put together."
In its 2019 labour market forecast, research group BuildForce reported that more than 103,900 new workers will need to be recruited in Ontario over the coming decade because of the rising number of retirements and meeting peak demands in residential, infrastructure and other construction sectors.
In December, the Ontario government said that the construction industry must focus on hiring millennials to fill the jobs that are about to open in the industry.