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Ready to build?: The state of skills in the infrastructure workforce

This report responds to a request from the National Network of Business and Industry Associations. It highlights the key challenges facing the infrastructure workforce if the United States embarks on a major overhaul of its aging infrastructure. A wave of retirements and changing demand for skills means employers and training providers need to act to ensure there are enough workers, and especially managers, to meet the need. Challenges include: (1) changing demand for skills creating cross-cutting gaps: the changing nature of work creates gaps for key skills across a range of roles because the skills needed today differ from what the existing workforce possesses and what training providers currently offer; (2) misaligned occupational supply and demand: many rapidly growing occupations face supply shortages. There are just not enough new entrants to keep up with employer demand and; (3) occupation-specific skill gaps: in some roles, there may be enough workers to meet demand, but those workers do not have the specific technical skills employers need. The report concludes with possible avenues for future analysis of skill gaps at both an industry and regional level, and recommends the development of new career pathways to address undersupplied occupations or skills.