Construction Firms Plan to Hire in 2013

Construction firms in the small and mid-sized business (SMB) sector expect to increase hiring in 2013, according to the results of a survey announced by Sage North America. The Sage SMB Hiring Outlook Survey revealed that SMB builders in the U.S. and Canada plan to add jobs as a result of increased demand for their products and services and an improved economic outlook. Sage, a provider of business-management software and services to more than 6 million small and midsized businesses worldwide, conducted the survey among 361 executives of SMB construction firms.

The survey revealed that one-third of employers in the SMB construction sector have hired or plan to hire in 2013; of those, 84 percent seek full-time help. This supports the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report that construction has gained an average of 27,000 jobs per month during the prior six months, suggesting an uptick in the once challenged construction industry.

“The construction industry is showing strong signs of recovery after several very challenging years, and we’re pleased to see that translating into increased hiring and a stronger employment outlook in 2013,” says Joe Langner, executive vice president, Mid-Market Solutions for Sage North America. “Our survey shows that builders are cautious but confident, and we’re optimistic that employment in this sector will continue to improve.”

When respondents were asked about the size of their workforce in 2013:

  • 33 percent said they have increased or will increase workforce size.
  • 33 percent indicated they will keep their workforce size the same.
  • 10 percent stated they have decreased or will decrease workforce size.
  • 24 percent reported they have not yet determined how their workforce will change.

Among SMB builders who hired in 2012 and 2013, 53 percent expect to hire more employees in 2013 than they hired in 2012, and 41 percent expect to hire about the same. Only 6 percent expect to hire fewer employees this year than last.

When respondents who planned to increase the size of their workforce were asked about the factors influencing their hiring decisions, 83 percent cited a stronger demand for their company’s products and services, and 36 percent cited a stronger economic outlook. Conversely, among respondents who planned to decrease their workforce or keep it the same, 57 percent indicated they were influenced by a steady or weakened demand for their products and services while 53 percent cited economic uncertainty.

The survey was conducted online among 361 U.S. and Canadian construction businesses between May 2 and May 15, 2013. The results have a margin of error of +/-5 percent at a 95 percent confidence level.

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