All sectors of Canada’s construction and maintenance industry, including owners, contractors, labour and government, came together today at BuildForce Canada’s second National Industry Strategy Summit to move forward on a national strategy to build a sustainable, competitive workforce by improving safety, productivity and workforce retention.
There was strong agreement that safety, productivity improvements, and workforce recruitment and retention issues are of paramount importance to the competitiveness of Canada’s construction and maintenance industry.
“Keeping our industry strong and competitive requires all elements of the construction industry to collaborate and share best practices,” said BuildForce Canada chair Christina Taylor. “As an organization we’re proud of the leading role we play in bringing industry together in this unique forum to discuss these issues and map out strategies to overcome these challenges.”
Canada’s construction and maintenance industry has a strong safety culture. The goal now is to build on those lessons learned and apply the same level of corporate leadership to the productivity challenges that face the sector. It will require strong senior-level engagement to improve productivity at every stage of construction, from planning to workforce training.
As close to a quarter of a million construction workers plan their retirement this decade, not only attracting, but retaining the next generation of construction workers was again highlighted as an industry key priority.
“There was strong agreement across industry to focus on ensuring all workplaces are respectful, safe and flexible,” said Clyde Scollan, vice-chair of BuildForce. “Meeting the needs of a diverse workforce, means ensuring that all workers feel welcome — which, like our focus on safety, is necessary to help drive the needed productivity gains.”
BuildForce Canada is a national industry-led organization that represents all sectors of Canada’s construction industry. Its mandate is to provide accurate and timely labour market data and analysis, as well as programs and initiatives to help manage workforce requirements and build the capacity and the capability of Canada’s construction and maintenance workforce.