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Leaders from Skilled Trades Industries Unite to Combat Labor Crisis in U.S. and Canada


August 22, 2023     3 minute read

(PHILADELPHIA – Aug. 22, 2023) NEST, the pioneers of integrated facilities management, has teamed up with leaders across the construction, retail, and skilled trades industries to create the Skilled Trades Advisory Council (STAC). Aimed to combat the crisis facing skilled labor in the U.S. and Canada, STAC’s founding advisors will leverage their resources, knowledge, and network to elevate the skilled trades as high-paying, honorable, and often heroic career paths, including electrical, plumbing, HVAC, janitorial, construction, and other essential jobs that require a rejuvenated workforce.

Founding STAC advisors include:

  • Rob Almond, CEO of NEST
  • Sara Angus, Director of Construction, Starbucks
  • Julie Starzynski, Director Construction & Design, Floor & Decor
  • Andrew Brown, Founder and CEO of Toolfetch
  • Sarah Hammond, Owner and President of Atlas and Treasurer of Women in HVAC
  • Kam Washington, Owner of PMA Construction
  • Kate Cinnamo, Executive Director of Explore the Trades
  • Mónica Muñoz, Senior Director of Capital Programs at DaVita Kidney Care
  • Mary Gaffney, President of NAWIC Philadelphia Foundation and GEM Mechanical Services

“I’m encouraged that so many others share my passion for growing the trades and ending the stigma that surrounds jobs in the industry,” said Almond, who spearheaded the initiative. “STAC is a way for many of us to work together and find ways to encourage youth to consider a career in the skilled trades. There are many viable, lucrative, and creative opportunities to explore.”

According to online recruiting platform Handshake, the application rate for young people seeking technical jobs dropped by 49% in 2022 compared to 2020 (source). Staffing firm PeopleReady estimate 40% of the 12 million people in the skilled trades workforce are over the age of 45, with nearly half of those workers over the age of 55 (source).

Associated Builders and Contractors reported that the construction industry will need to attract an estimated 546,000 additional workers on top of the normal pace of hiring in 2023 to meet the demand for labor (source).

“The U.S. and Canadian workforces are struggling to fill a massive gap in the skilled trades, and we need to unite as an industry to reverse the trend,” added Almond. “This group of founding advisors shares that passion across many sectors that make up the industry.”

About NEST

NEST is the pioneer of the Integrated Facilities Management (IFM) industry in the United States and Canada. Founded in 1994, NEST delivers day-to-day tactical management of facilities, financial consulting, analytics, project management, and construction for major multi-site brands across North America. NEST provides 360° support 24 hours a day through one comprehensive facilities management solution that drives cost savings while maintaining an exceptional customer experience. To learn more about NEST, visit enterNEST.com or follow NEST on LinkedIn.

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