Former NRCA Chairman of the Board, Nelson Braddy, Jr., CEO of King of Texas Roofing Company, Inc., Grand Prairie, Texas, was featured in an article addressing the ongoing labor shortage in the Nov. 24, 2016, issue of The Wall Street Journal.
According to Braddy, King of Texas Roofing has turned down $20 million worth of projects during the past two years because the company can’t find enough workers. He says he would hire 60 roofing workers right away if he could find them.
“It’s the worst I’ve seen in my career,” Braddy says.
The article cites many factors behind the decline in U.S. labor, including Mexican families are smaller and their children are better educated; an aging U.S. population; the physically demanding nature of blue collar jobs; and the trend towards pursuing college degrees. In addition, Congress has failed to reach a compromise on immigration to address employer needs for a steady, legal workforce.
To help recruit more employees, King of Texas Roofing has raised wages twice this year, putting most of its workers above $20 an hour. In addition, it offers a management course for foreman, English classes and $250 bonuses for referrals from current workers.
Braddy states he would like to see the incoming Trump administration help solve the labor shortage.
“Employers like me hope for some sort of work-visa program to give immigrants a means to work legally and come out of the shadows,” he says. “That is going to help the economy.”
To read the article in its entirety, click below. If you do not subscribe to The Wall Street Journal, you can request a PDF of the article by emailing Charlotte Norgaard, NRCA’s media relations manager, at email@example.com.