As job openings abound employers look to younger workers

first_imgWith a wave of construction worker retirements looming, the Southwest Washington Contractors Association took its job-recruitment plans to the drawing board.It came back with a coloring book.The six-page book, to be handed out at the upcoming Dozer Day, tries to charm boys and girls who might someday put on a hard hat. It tells the story of a child who falls in love with the industry and, decades later, starts a construction company.“It’s just to create awareness that construction jobs can be fun and rewarding,” spokeswoman Andrea Smith said.Many industries in Clark County would like to create awareness about jobs right now, as unemployment levels stay consistently low and companies say they can’t keep up with demand. Many are turning to youth to fill their ranks.Not every industry uses the same approach, but trades especially seem to be making the most concerted efforts to recruit new, younger workers.“The job market is really good. There’s a huge demand,” said Deken Letinich, area representative for the Washington and Northern Idaho District Council of Laborers. He added that he never misses a chance to talk at a high school.Meanwhile, educators and economic development organizations are trying to meet demand by revving up career and technical education — what today’s parents once knew as “vocational school.”Help wantedThe Southwest Washington Contractors Association isn’t the only one with a children’s book. Lakeside Industries, an asphalt company based in Issaquah, has one, too.last_img

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