The Construction Industry has been, historically, dominated by men. While currently a true statement, the number of women entering the industry continues to grow annually. Although not well documented, it is firmly believed that as early as the 13th-century, women have contributed to the industry either through family or necessity, often accepting extremely low wages for labor-intensive work. Thankfully, the times have changed over several centuries. Women have taken the lead in growing their careers amid obstacles and preconceived ideas of what a woman may accomplish.
Various organizations dedicated to encouraging and supporting women in the industry have brought new knowledge and improved outlook to the near 700,000 construction companies and their over eleven million employees in the US. In a recent study, the percentage of women employed by the construction industry hovers at 10%, a 1% increase from only the previous year. However, considering the United States totals 11.2 million individuals classifying their career as construction, women remain significantly in the minority.
Compared to men in leadership roles, the percentage of women is even lower. According to “Women in Construction: The State of the Industry in 2020, by Lori Zitzman, of the 1.1 million women in the industry, the majority (86.7%) fall under the category of office employees and 7% Executives, and 2.5% of women are actively performing work on the jobsite. Organizations such as the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC) have been diligently working to increase those percentages while encouraging women to act as role models and mentors to young women entering the field.