Help Wanted signs are prevalent across the United States including in the water and wastewater industry. The workforce shortage will have a far reaching impact on utilities, especially if construction and upgrades are planned. Systems should expect the shortage coupled with supply chain issues to impact construction projects resulting in delays and timely completion. This is a reality as funds become available through the infrastructure act and systems consider project planning. As in the past smaller projects will be a lower priority as engineers and contractors focus on larger more profitable projects first. There is nothing wrong with that but systems should recognize the future landscape as it relates to construction projects.
The best solutions for the workforce shortage are locally-based, and systems can start developing their local workforce with the Rural Water Apprenticeship Program. This a federally registered apprenticeship program by the Department of Labor can support a system’s effort to find, train and maintain staff for the future. Contact your State Rural Water Association or the NRWA.
The ServLine by HomeServe uses a network of local plumbers who have gone through background and drug screenings. The Program is provided at no cost to cities, and partner cities can receive royalties based on participation. Partnership helps to strengthen the relationship between the system and its customers by providing education, valuable protection and exceptional service. Creating allies through positive and transparent customer relationships is a crucial component of obtaining public support for the funding required to address aging infrastructure for the foreseeable future. Water companies interested in offering protection to customers can visit www.servline.com.
To find out how you can help your residents achieve peace of mind, contact us.