{Aug 2021} Home construction in Brownsburg. (IIB photo)

A national construction trade association says the Indianapolis metro area has one of the highest employment rates for construction workers in the U.S. The Associated General Contractors of America says construction employment in the Indianapolis-Carmel-Anderson metro area hit an all-time October high, climbing 8% year over year.

The association says the region added 4,700 new construction jobs between October 2020 and October 2021, which it says is a bigger increase than most of the other 358 metro areas.

The organization says Elkhart, Kokomo and Fort Wayne also added construction jobs during the past year. But AGCA says 90% of construction firms report struggling to find qualified workers.

The AGCA says as local construction firms expand their payrolls, the association and its local chapters are taking steps to prepare the next generation of construction workers amid significant construction worker shortages.

“As demand for construction grows here and in many other parts of the country, more firms are having a difficult time finding enough qualified workers,” said Ken Simonson, the chief economist for the Associated General Contractors of America. “Yet contractors in Indianapolis are showing the rest of the industry that there are ways to recruit more people into construction.”

Simonson says the association is taking a range of steps to attract more people into construction careers, including a digital advertising campaign to recruit new workers.