Iowa DOT News

WANTED: Skilled construction workers and equipment operators

AMES, Iowa – March 18, 2009 – “Attention all skilled highway construction workers and equipment operators – jobs in Iowa are available.”  That’s the message the Associated General Contractors of Iowa’s (AGCIA) new career Web site is sending to Iowans and others interested in working for Iowa businesses.


Robert Cramer, co-president of Cramer and Associates Inc., a Grimes-based highway/heavy contractor, and senior vice-president of AGC of Iowa, said, “We’ve struggled for many years trying to find skilled help, so this is an effort to address the long-term issue of getting people into construction.” Cramer also said, “We will probably hire 30 to 40 people in the spring, and may need more people this year due to the increased volume of work.“


Perhaps the greatest benefit to job seekers is that the AGCIA Web site consolidates the recruitment efforts of several Iowa contractors into one location. Individuals looking for employment can go to one site to see company profiles and view available job listings.  


Launched in January with partial funding from the Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT), the primary purpose of AGCIA’s Web site is to address a serious challenge facing the construction industry – identifying, hiring and retaining skilled construction industry professionals. 


Iowa’s highway construction workforce is aging (average age of a skilled construction worker is 47) and candidates are not being drawn into the industry quickly enough to compensate for the exodus of the baby boomers.


Roger Bierbaum, director of the Iowa DOT’s Office of Contracts, said, “Iowa will be receiving nearly $358 million in federal highway funds through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. This means a significant increase in highway work and a wonderful opportunity to put more Iowans to work in the construction industry.” 


Bierbaum also said the site will help contractors comply with federal and state requirements related to recruitment and hiring, including an effort to recruit minority and female employees.




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