Is There a Skilled Labor Shortage in the U.S.?

skilled workers
skilled workers

Is There a Skilled Labor Shortage in the U.S.?


With unemployment at record lows, there is still a critical skilled labor shortage across the country. Part of the reason is that we have an aging population; experienced workers are retiring. But the other half of the equation is that younger workers aren’t replacing them. In fact, many high-paying trades jobs remain empty because there’s no one to fill them.1

This skilled worker shortage impacts almost every industry.

If you’re ready to make a move, you could help fill the gap and build yourself a rewarding career. What kind of industry sounds right to you?

Healthcare Worker Shortage

The same people who are aging out of the workforce are also taxing the U.S. healthcare system. People live longer and they demand more medical services. And some 60 percent of the U.S. population suffer from some sort of chronic illnesses like asthma, diabetes, heart disease, and hypertension.2 That’s why there’s such a demand for nurses and medical assistants.3/4

To become a medical assistant or a nurse, you’ll need training. But unlike many medical careers, you won’t need to go to a four-year college. Instead, you can attend a career training school like Porter and Chester Institute. You could complete our Practical Nursing program in as little as 15 months and our Medical Assisting program in as little 9 months.

Trades Worker Shortage

The need for Plumbers, Electricians, and HVACR (heating, ventilation, air conditioning, refrigeration) Technicians is also on the rise.5/6/7 If you want a career where you get to use your hands—and your brain—the Trades might be for you. But do you have the skills?

You’ll need to be:

  • Adaptable
    • Whether you do maintenance work, installations, or repairs, not everything will go as planned every time. That’s why you need to be able to quickly adapt to new situations and take on new problems as they arise.
  • A Good Problem Solver
    • Working on a heating system, connecting power to the grid, fixing a stopped-up drain: these all require a certain level of problem-solving skills. Especially when you’re working on old systems, much of what you encounter will be a lot like a puzzle.
  • A Hard Worker
  • Good with Your Hands
    • If you’ve always loved to fix things and tinker, then you probably don’t want to sit behind a desk or work in retail. You want a career where you get to work with your hands every day.
  • Good with People
    • Even though you’ll be working on equipment, you’ll also be working with people. You’ll need a pleasant demeanor and a positive attitude. Customer service is what your job is all about.
  • Physically Fit
    • You don’t have to a triathlete, but the Trades are more physically demanding than office jobs. Your job will give you a free workout!

If you’re ready to get to work on a new career, check out all Porter and Chester Institute has to offer. We have a wide range of training programs for healthcare and the trades and a passion to help fill those worker shortages.