What a beautiful October we had. I hope you were able to enjoy some time outside in the beautiful weather it offered. We had such a wonderful time with the 70 teams that showed up at Blackhorse Golf Course for the 11th Annual C3 Golf Classic. We look forward to this day each year as one of our favorites. The staff and I wish we could hang out with our fantastic participating companies and supporters every day. Seeing each of you and being able to host an event that creates so many smiles is a privilege. Thank you to each of you for your support of our mission to strengthen the safe, skilled, and sustainable craft workforce talent pipeline.
This year was a terrific year for our golf committee as they raised more money than we ever have in our ten-year history. We were able to secure some amazing raffle prize donations and had outstanding volunteers. I'd like to thank everyone by name but will call out just a few here for their extraordinary contributions. Our committee was led by two people who worked long hours to see it be the best it ever has been. Thank you to our committee chair, Glen Blaha from MAREK, and C3 Marketing and Operations Manager, Diane Aguilar. Additionally, a shout-out is deserved by our raffle prize specialist, Nick Guidry. Nick's day job is consulting companies on workforce but by night he procures some really great prizes.
Additionally, we couldn't do any of this without our underwriters. Thank you again to MAREK, McCarthy Building Company, TDIndustries, Texas Exterior Systems, and Harvey Builders.
If you missed it this year make sure to scan the QR code below to get on our early notification list. We move to Monday, October 24th next year and I know it will be another event you don't want to miss.
Angela Robbins Taylor
Angela Robbins Taylor
It was almost two years ago today that we first hosted the #SHEbuildsHouston event at M.O. Campbell Event Center. The event allowed over 1000 young women to touch the tools and technology of construction as well as hear the powerful stories of women from the field to the C-suite. The women who volunteered and companies who participated have all been anxiously awaiting the next event that had been postponed due to the pandemic and venue challenges.
But the wait is over!
#SHEbuildsHouston will be announcing the official event date for Spring of 2022 next Friday. Partnering with Alief ISD for the venue and inviting Spring Branch ISD to join we are planning for 1500 attendees.
Construction Career Collaborative along with National Association of Women in Construction's Houston Chapter will open registration and sponsorship sign up on November 1st.
Not familiar with the event check out the photos from 2019 or read the Houston Chronicle article.
Interested in getting all the updates? Send us an email to be added to our #SHEbuildsHouston distribution list.
Angela Robbins Taylor
Angela Robbins Taylor
Can you believe it has only been a four short years that I have worked with C3 on the mission of strengthening the safe, skilled, and sustainable craft workforce in Houston? And yet we have grown exponentially through that four years, adding experts to our consulting staff and taking on new and exciting adventures like our grant from the Houston-Galveston Workforce Board. And the growth just keeps happening. We are hiring AGAIN! If you know someone who is a talented consultant with a strong talent management background we need to hear about them. This person will continue to help us provide consulting services and endorsements to companies for their craft training programs. Click on the link below to see the full hiring profile on LinkedIn.
Beyond our amazing team, we have added programs that we believe will provide true value to our Accredited Employers and their workforce both in the office and now in the field. Two weeks ago we announced the OSHA partnership with AGC that is available to C3 Accredited Employers and this week we launched our first cohort of NCCER's Construction Workforce Development Professional. And we aren't done yet. Registration is open for NCCER's Mentoring for Craft Professionals. This course will be taught by C3 staff, thanks to the NCCER sponsorship of ABC/CMEF. The course teaches craft professionals how to mentor other craft workers to continue their skill growth in the field. If you have an on-the-job training program and rely on the field to mentor and teach, this class is a must have for your organization.
We can't grow like this unless we have the partner companies like our growing list of Accredited Employers, General Contractors, Advocates, and Owners. Together we are strengthening the industry. Together we are elevating the level the ability of construction to compete for high quality talent. Together we are creating sustainability for commercial construction in Houston. So thank you for being part of our growth and pushing to move the needle on construction workforce sustainability.
Angela Robbins Taylor
James F. Carnes Sr.
U.S. Department of Labor
What is a Pre-Apprenticeship Program?
Pre-Apprenticeship is a program or set of strategies that are designed to prepare individuals to enter and succeed in a Registered Apprenticeship Program (RAP). Pre-apprenticeship can be integrated into high school career and technical programs with the help of a contractor who is sponsoring the students.
Consider the Benefits of Pre-Apprenticeship
Save time and money: Pre-Apprenticeship programs provide pre-screened, ready-to-work employees who have been trained in the specific skills employers need. Find partners to help design your program.
Many successful Pre-Apprenticeship programs are housed at high schools and community colleges because they offer hands-on learning opportunities for students. Learn more about how apprenticeship boosts education.
A Pre-Apprenticeship program can help you prepare for the apprenticeship that's right for you. Read more about the federal Pre-Apprenticeship programs YouthBuild and Job Corps or search our Partner Finder to see sponsors that may offer a Pre-Apprenticeship program.
What Creates a Quality Pre-Apprenticeship Program?
Quality pre-apprenticeship programs can play a valuable role in providing work-based learning to help people prepare for an entry-level apprenticeship. While Pre-Apprenticeship programs have varied designs and approaches, the Department of Labor has outlined the elements of a quality pre-apprenticeship program that can place an individual on the potential career pathway to employability.
Training that is based on industry standards
Hands-on training or volunteer opportunities that do not displace paid employees
Agreements with sponsors that allow program participants to enter directly into an apprenticeship
INCREASED DIVERSITY(Learn more about Diversity and Inclusion)
Recruitment and preparation for underrepresented populations to be successful
Wrap-around services or referrals to help participants complete the program (e.g childcare, transportation)
Collaboratively promote Registered Apprenticeship to other employers
Believing in the benefits that pre-apprenticeship programs can offer employers, educators, and individuals who are seeking a career change the Dep't of Labor has drafted the following real-life case studies serve as examples of pre-apprenticeships across various industries and occupations and the impact they are having in our communities.
CVS HEALTH Attracted more diverse candidates, increased efficiency by 50%, and raised retention rates
URBAN TECHNOLOGY PROJECT - Increased employment of disabled workers. CHICAGO WOMEN IN TRADES - 40% of participants were women and 90% were people of color, exceeding national averages.
For Inquiries regarding Pre-apprenticeship or Registered Apprenticeship contact
JAMES F. CARNES SR
CELL 832 552 2267
Learning and Development Business Partner
A good friend once told me, in a moment of stubbornness, “You don’t get to ‘not’ right now.” As much as I did not enjoy hearing it, he was right! And as I reflect, I am glad that I heard him and chose to act instead of remaining comfortable in that moment. When it comes to business growth, your organization need not remain comfortable.
Learning and Development (L&D) is not an expendable resource, growth requires it. Ignoring L&D is the opposite of what the most successful organizations, especially in Houston’s Commercial Construction Industry, have documented as best business practices. Take a moment to think of the top five organizations in the commercial construction industry. Now think about what they have in common. Among other key factors, they have invested in and committed to L&D, from Laborer to Foreman, and beyond.
One of my favorite books, Jim Collins's Good to Great, compares various companies which have either exceeded expectations during turbulent times or failed and became extinct because of an inability to innovate and pivot. “The good to great companies understood a simple truth; tremendous power exists in the fact of [continuous] improvement and the delivery of results.” Yes, your organization may have been around a long time, but if you find yourself saying, “This is how we’ve always done it,” I’m sorry to tell you, but you may soon find yourself among the companies that become extinct.
In her 2017 book, Learning for the Long Run, Holly Burkett presents the “Seven Practices for Sustainability,” and in the middle is “Driving for Results, Continuously Improving”. At C3, one of our most recently launched programs is a course offered once a month entitled “Driving Business Results through Talent Management.” If you’ve taken the course, you know that when an organization places significance in, and practices, continuous improvement, it unlocks the door to greater revenue growth. And let’s be honest, revenue is one of the reasons your organization formed, isn’t it? Not the only reason for sure, but certainly one of the reasons!
W. Edward Deming believed in transformative learning and like Deming, I believe that when organizations encourage and support people's growth, it improves the business’ efforts toward the company’s growth and sustainability. At its core, Learning and Development is a commitment to innovation. High-performing organizations have a strong commitment to L&D, and they encourage pushing the limits beyond the status quo, continuously moving from what is to what can be.
“Well, we don’t want to pay to train them and then have them leave.” Sound familiar? Have you seen Amazon’s most recent campaigns? Amazon is now highlighting team members who’ve started a new career because Amazon invested in them. Instead of fearing employees leaving, they are choosing to highlight how they help people grow. Your company, most likely, is not as big as Amazon. GOOD NEWS, you don’t have to be!
One of C3’s Champion level endorsed employers, Chamberlin Roofing and Waterproofing makes a habit of investing in its people and sharing their successes. Most recently, Chamberlin shared with C3 how its training and development practices have become their calling card. They have had employees return to the organization after realizing the value of the extensive learning and growth opportunities available at Chamberlin vs. the competitors. When you look at C3’s list of Champion level endorsed companies you’ll find that investing in organizational and individual growth is the trend. Are you ready to join this elite group of employers? Here’s my advice, start small. Don’t think of growth as a massive venture. All it takes is a series of small steps/commitments/choices that add up to something big. As the old saying goes, “How do you eat an elephant?”
Listen, at the end of the day, there is no government or state mandate to improve continuously. But just as in our day-to-day lives, those who invest in themselves have a much better chance of thriving not only surviving. So, I am telling you, as my friend told me, “You don’t get to ‘not’ right now”. If you are a leader in your organization, I implore you, don’t leave your organization only to survive. Push the limits, invest in your team. Dare to grow! No, it won’t be easy, but it will be worth it. And remember, C3 has a team of Talent Development Professionals to assist you and share best practices along the way.
Breaking news for C3 comes in the form of a grant from the Houston-Galveston Area Board (H-GAC). The H-GAC focuses on assisting companies in attracting, training, and retaining workers. They felt that the C3 mission of strengthening a safe, skilled, and sustainable workforce was something their grant money could truly help push forward. The grant, renewable for three years, provides Construction Career Collaborative with the funding to hire additional staff to assist with our craft training consultations and to increase opportunities for construction companies to pursue excellence in workforce.
When applying for the grant C3 strategically looked at barriers to entry and ongoing success of our participating Accredited Employers and aimed to provide programs to fill those gaps. Throughout our history, C3 has heard from those seeking to participate as Accredited Employers (AEs) that OSHA 10 and OSHA 30 for the entire workforce can be a hard hurdle to pass. As part of this grant, we are pleased to announce that starting in the 4th quarter we will be partnering with the AGC to offer one OSHA 10 each month to AEs seeking to skill their entire workforce. There will be no cost for this course to those who are Accredited Employers. OSHA 30 will be offered quarterly and will also be free. Need a session in Spanish - C3 seeks to add those in Q1 of 2022.
Knowing that a key to sustainable change is to build programs and support those programs with people, C3 included two new NCCER courses in our grant proposal. As it has never been the goal of C3 to train craft workers these two programs focus on enabling companies to become truly self-sustaining in relation to providing in-house craft training programs for their own workforce. The first course is Mentoring for Craft Professionals, a 10-hour course focused on helping journey-level professionals or foremen better aid in the training and mentoring of newer employees. Used in combination with our competency mapping and on-the-job training programs, this course will help companies launch and maintain a stronger career path for the workforce.
With the advancement in craft training, it is clear that companies will need to have dedicated coverage of craft training in their office. To aid those who don't have direct expertise in workforce development, C3 will be offering the year-long certificate program, NCCER Construction Workforce Development Professional Certification. This course requires an application and letter of recommendation. If you are interested, please sign up soon, as spots are limited and filling quickly. You can find the application link here.
Industry Awareness Outreach
Finally understanding that best-in-class Human Resource practices and Craft Training programs are not enough to create a sustainable talent pipeline alone, the grant also allows C3 to hire an industry outreach specialist. This position will be responsible for creating stronger and more productive programs with students in ISDs, trade schools, and junior colleges. Our long-term goal with this position is to create a more positive image of construction as a career and to create strong conversion rates from school to career.
It is an exciting time at Construction Career Collaborative as this grant begins to impact the depth and breadth of our programming for the future. We are stepping closer to our mission of collaboratively strengthening and growing the safe, skilled, and sustainable craft workforce talent pipeline.
Guest Blog by
Senior Vice President of Regional Workforce Development
Greater Houston Partnership, UpSkill Houston
Our city’s craft professionals have built Houston – a global city and a city of opportunity. Through C3’s innovative work, the industry continues to create a more sustainable and skilled craft workforce that is essential for the industry and our city. After disasters, the region’s construction industry steps up, leads, and rebuilds the city – making it better and more resilient.
The COVID-19 pandemic, its economic downturn, and events of 2020 have been challenging for our region, yet they provide an opportunity for us to come together and make Houston stronger while creating economic opportunities for our residents. During months of uncertainty, many commercial projects were put on hold, delayed, or suspended. Craft professionals, however, were on the front line during the pandemic, continuing the work of completing projects and improving their skills. We also know that companies who invested in their employees during this time will have greater flexibility and agility in a rapidly changing economy.
Unfortunately, during the pandemic, many Houstonians were displaced from their jobs and many young people who graduated from high school did not pursue post-secondary education. By current estimates, there are more than 200,000 unemployed individuals in the region. The employment effects of the pandemic have disproportionately impacted low-income families, women, and communities of color. The data also indicate individuals with low levels of educational attainment (i.e., less than a four-year college degree) will face significant challenges finding pathways back into the workforce. As a result of the pandemic, many of these displaced individuals and young people will struggle to climb the economic ladder as they face limited opportunities for good jobs.
In my work with construction leaders over the last several years, it is clear the construction industry has invented one of the most powerful social programs of all – a good job as a craft professional. While government can create an enabling infrastructure, it doesn’t create jobs or ensure opportunity. The private sector, through our free enterprise system, creates jobs and supports a growing economy and shared prosperity. Houston’s construction sector has provided economic opportunity for many years by employing and upskilling many of our residents.
In the past, construction firms have partnered with United Way of Greater Houston’s THRIVE network and Gulf Coast Workforce Solutions to screen, prepare and support new pipelines of talent into the industry (e.g., Women in Construction, Work Faith Connection, SER Jobs, Houston Area Urban League). Through the industry’s commitment to upskilling, many of these individuals have thrived and prospered as craft professionals. Building off this previous success, we can work together and connect the dots with community-based organizations and workforce partners that collectively engage with, support and train low-income families, women, communities of color, and young adults.
If we take this opportunity to partner in new ways and at scale (with employers, community partners, and others), we can create new and more diverse talent pipelines by preparing Houston residents with the skills for success in the construction industry. As Houston’s economy begins its recovery and continues its expansion, the construction industry can play a vital role in helping Houston and its residents get back on track.
Peter Beard serves as senior vice president of Regional Workforce Development at the Greater Houston Partnership and leads its UpSkill Houston initiative.
Angela Robbins Taylor
I had coffee with the president of a C3 Accredited Employer last week. We talked about how to create a sustainable craft workforce. As you know, that is the heart of the mission of C3. For years we have continued to face the diminishing ranks of those who want to enter careers in craft trades. This workforce shortage problem will continue to grow until we change how we think about and handle our workforce. Investing in this change is a long game, not a short-term stop gap, and is the mission of all C3 Accredited Employers and Owners. Even more than mission, it is the legacy each of us has the opportunity to leave on our industry.
The solution to the workforce problem requires that we solve the talent pipeline crisis by shifting our mindset to view talent as an asset to our bottom line. Just like materials require a supply chain so does talent. The investment needed to truly impact the talent shortage will require a collaborative approach where commercial construction identifies critical positions, creates a common vocabulary around job competencies, and collectively forecasts demand. As C3 continues to consult with Accredited Employers to create competency maps, we see that critical positions are often overlapping from trade to trade and vocabulary is already similar. Believe me when I tell you, there is common language around the threshold skills needed to enter the industry and what pre-employment skills are required to be successful. Now it is time for a collaborative approach to determine ongoing demand and how to approach the suppliers of talent to create a pipeline that produces high quality and is ready to tackle the unique cyclic nature of construction company hiring.
C3's initial strategy has been to give companies the ability to retain workers through investment in craft training career paths that engage workers in building successful careers. We talk about talent management and the lifecycle of talent because we realize that requiring a training program and an OSHA 10/30 certificate isn't going to instantly create sustainability in the talent pipeline. In fact, it does little to increase the number of potential candidates coming into the industry. In reality, having a training program with an identified career path is pre-work for sustainability.
Let's face it, we aren't very enticing to the digital native demographic currently residing in our high school and community college classrooms. Employing new technologies like 3D simulation and virtual reality to take the job site to the classroom not only engages learners but is also more cost effective as it limits material cost and consumption but allows for more repetition for skill development. Challenging how we teach, and working with school districts to make sure the best knowledge provider is in the classroom, which may not be the industry Subject Matter Expert, are conversations we need to begin having now. There are many ways we can grow our image and change how we attract new talent and we must stop settling for those who are temporarily looking for work instead of actively seeking careers. By raising the bar on what we expect from our entry-level workforce we raise the standard of excellence for our industry. If we fail to address these changes in sourcing and preparing our talent pipeline, we can anticipate that our shortfalls in workforce will just continue to grow.
The good news in all of this is that we have the opportunity to do something truly significant for construction. It is great to have a successful career but better to have a career of significance, for that is where truly great things happen. C3's talent pipeline work is significant work. What is our overall impact on our world? We have within our grasp the ability to change the economic landscape of Houston. In the United States, approximately 34 million people live in poverty. Commercial construction offers the opportunity to break this poverty cycle by providing careers that offer an essential skillset leading to a living wage. Living wages allow professional craft workers to provide for themselves and their families. This creates a legacy in that family where children achieve even beyond their parents and cycles get broken.
This is the long game of sustainability in our industry and our community. This is the legacy I saw for me. This is why I am C3. Tell me your why by emailing me firstname.lastname@example.org or tagging us on social media with #myC3why
I love school. Those closest to me might even say it is one of my favorite places. Schools are full of potential, dreams, and hope for the future. They are alive with possibility. They represent the pipeline of future workforce applicants. They are our supply chain.
Fortunately, my position at Construction Career Collaborative (C3) affords me plenty of exposure to the future of our workforce. C3 currently partners with local school districts, community colleges and technical schools. Each partnership is geared at helping them to build a pipeline designed to meet the need of commercial construction. As you can imagine, each of these partners are asking for guidance.
The partnerships with local school districts and community colleges allow us to create pathways that train our prospective workforce before they arrive at our job sites. Creative programs that offer pre-apprenticeship or earn and learn programs benefit from pairing state and federal workforce dollars with training programs to put the employer at the advantage. Enabling employers to clearly identify employability and technical skills before entering the hiring process produces stronger recruiting and sets up companies to succeed at retention by placing higher quality, skilled, entry-level candidates into internal craft training programs and career paths.
Currently C3 serves on the advisory board of seven school districts. It takes a lot of time and effort to coordinate with each district, and there are more seeking our input every year. We have become a highly sought expert voice on commercial construction workforce needs. But we do not want to do this alone. We want you and your company to help drive the workforce of tomorrow.
We are excited to announce our newest volunteer committee, the C3 Educational Advisory Committee. This committee will focus on enriching our current partnerships and pursuing other key opportunities with school districts, community colleges and trade schools. We are actively seeking members to volunteer on this committee and serve as the voice of industry for our local training partners. If you are interested, please contact me at 713.999.1032 or email@example.com. Our first meeting will be in August, so don’t delay.
Construction Industry Institute (CII)
Construction Users Roundtable (CURT)
National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER)