The National Trend in Blue-Collar Employment
In 1970, blue-collar jobs were 31.2 percent of total nonfarm employment. By 2016, their share had fallen to 13.6 percent of total employment. While blue-collar jobs have been declining as a share of total employment over this whole period, this was mostly due to the growth in total employment. The number of blue-collar jobs did not change much through most of this period. In 2000 there were 24.6 million blue-collar jobs, only slightly below the peak of 25.0 million in 1979. However the numbers plunged in the next decade due to the impact of the exploding trade deficit and the 2008-2009 recession. Blue-collar jobs fell to 17.8 million in 2010 and have since rebounded modestly to 19.6 million in the most recent data.
The world has changed in the last generation. There was a time when a blue collar job could provide for a man and his family, and while in the last few years that has hardly been the case, it seems that that trend is starting to reverse.
The share in total number of jobs has changed but not nearly so much as the percentage of total jobs.
At the same time, with a lower supply of skilled blue collar labor and rising demand, that has begun to increase the price of that labor.
The demand for hard-hat and entry-level blue-collar jobs has grown steadily since the 2008 financial crisis, so it is not something immigration advocates can easily pin on the lack of foreign workers.
Sectors like healthcare, including clinics and nursing homes; traditional manufacturing; agribusiness; extraction industry equipment operators; and construction workers will see continued demand and shortfalls in applicant pools. In addition to increasing wages to attract workers (many trucking companies now pay six-figure salaries), companies may have to hire more and look elsewhere.
It seems that the entire sector is going through a transformation, and is now on the verge of a new boom.
Here at the Volk App Project, we see this growth coming, and are here for the workers, to build the platform to ensure that they retain the lion’s share of the value of their labor.
We recognize the need for alternative forms of technology for blue collar workers and are committed to build that tech, beginning with Mobile Vehicle Restoration.
The automotive industry, out of all industries, is in desperate need of a shake up, and our partners and technicians will be there to begin it.
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