The faces of the HVAC industry appear to be changing. Traditionally, the number of women in HVAC careers has been slim—hovering around 1.2 percent. However, momentum for women in the workforce is spiking. December job reports saw women outnumber men in the American workforce for only the second time.
What’s more, 2020 field service trends indicate women may have the opportunities to move into HVAC careers in higher numbers than ever before. In this article, we’ll dive into new field service trends in 2020, and why all signs point to a bright future for women in HVAC careers in the coming years.
Field Service Trends Point to a Demand for Women
One of the most resounding field service trends is the loud call for talent. Across the board, demand for workplace skills is jumping. According to one survey, 54 percent of companies globally are reporting talent shortages—the highest in more than a decade.
Adding to that demand we saw in early 2020 (before COVID-19) is an upswing of jobs throughout the field service industry. As baby boomers depart the skilled labor workforce, they’re expected to leave 30 million jobs unfilled. That suggests there will be more opportunities for women to enter the field later in 2020.
More Diverse Workforces Are Succeeding
As more women join HVAC and plumbing teams, company leaders are seeing better results. Statistics suggest this isn’t a mere coincidence. According to a 2018 McKinsey report, companies with gender-diverse executive teams were 21 percent more likely to pull in above-average profits than less diverse companies.
Essentially, as industries welcome more diversity, leadership is benefiting from fresh viewpoints. That means teams are tackling problems in new ways, and companies are raking in more profits.
This upward trend in diversity-related success could lead to even more proactive recruitment of women. It may mean CEOs who see positive results will push for more gender diversity and actively bring more women on board in 2020.
Women Are Tapping into Key Resources
As the world becomes more connected through technology, it’s opening people up to extra support and new ways to learn from like-minded people. That goes a long way for women, who have traditionally faced headwinds, including unequal pay, sexism, and isolation.
Now, resources are empowering women and opening new opportunities to break into HVAC careers. Here are a few examples:
Apprenticeship and Nontraditional Employment for Women (ANEW) is a pre-apprenticeship program designed to promote equity and inclusion in skilled labor careers. The group partners with apprenticeship programs and connects women with partners throughout the industry.
Pride and Paycheck is a free publication with articles, essays, and stories centered around tradeswomen. It’s a powerful resource for women who want to hear stories and advice from others in the field.
The Women's Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) provides support for women entrepreneurs and business leaders in all industries. The group also offers several career resources, including scholarships and publications highlighting women’s success stories.
Women in HVACR provides networking events, mentoring programs, and education for women in HVAC and refrigeration careers. In addition to featuring conferences and other events, the group also provides scholarship links and educational resources for women who are interested in joining the industry.
Education Opportunities for HVAC Women Are Growing
In 2020 and beyond, field service trends are pointing to new opportunities for women to pick up the education, skills, and training needed to become a force in the HVAC field. Some publications suggest an increasing number of students are ditching traditional four-year universities for trade schools and apprenticeships.
At the same time, women who decide to pursue training are being met with even more resources to help them further their education. Here are some resources paving the path to HVAC learning:
With the HVAC industry valued at $130.5 billion in 2019 and expected to grow 6 percent by 2027, women who are soaking up education now will be poised to jump into a booming industry.
Stay Up to Date on Field Service Trends
All of these field service trends suggest more women will be picking up HVAC tools in the future. Still, there are even more changes shaking up the future for everyone in the industry.
Want to stay up to date on the latest trends, tips, and technology in the field service industry? Subscribe to our blog today!