395 Anchor Rd, Unit 23

Hamilton, ON L8W 0C7

38B Bigwin Rd, Unit 2A

Hamilton, ON L8W 3R4

Adapting to COVID-19 & Skilled Trades Shortage

What’s inside this article: 2020 and going into 2021 has seen unprecedented challenges for business, society, and the skilled trades industry. We cover how The Coating Inspector is addressing the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic and a shortage of skilled workers.

Experienced trade workers are retiring. There’s a shortage of experienced and certified personnel. The province of Ontario spends millions on encouraging the workforce to enter skilled trades.


Skilled Worker Trends In 2021

Monte McNaughton, the minister of labor said in Ontario alone a shortage of skilled tradespeople costs the province billions of dollars per year.

Ontario invested an additional 26.8 million in 2020 totaling an investment of 43 million to attract new people into the trades to replace the aging workforce. The province is seeking to change the perception of working in the trades for young people. With growing student debt for degrees that don’t immediately translate to relevant or high paying jobs, Stephen Lecce says:

“The aim of the ministry’s curriculum reforms is to change the culture within our schools,” said Minister of Education Stephen Lecce. “The skilled trades are dignified, well-paid jobs, and I think young people should be targeting them.” 


There is a void between the boots on the ground workers and the management of companies, the government, and the private sector. 

The Coating Inspector fills that gap and supports project managers, supervisors, and key stakeholders. We provide expert labor and consulting services to fill the skilled trade workers gap in the coating inspection industry. Coating inspection is a very specific niche that most project managers and industrial sites don’t have in-house talent with the expertise required.

Filling the demand of skilled trades workers such as coating inspectors starts with the normalization and education of young people as trades being a viable career path. With Canada’s new measures, students will be exposed to the trades being a viable option as early as Grade 1. Previously, college and university was pushed in educational institutions as the best career path. This bias must change to meet the demand.

Student debt is a growing concern for those pursuing post-secondary education. In 2018, the median debt of university graduates was $17,500. Going into the trades provides an opportunity to have a marketable skill upon earning certification, as well as earning money during an apprenticeship. This is steadily growing as a viable path for people as the saturation of university degrees increases, and certain degrees become less marketable and relevant. Many university graduates finish their education and take jobs unrelated to their major.

  • Young bachelor’s degree holders in ‘arts and humanities’ and ‘social and behavioural sciences’ were more likely than other young graduates with bachelor’s degrees to work in jobs typically requiring a high school education at most. Bachelor’s degree holders working in such jobs are classified as being ‘overqualified.’

According to Canadian Business, 4 of the top 10 paying education paths are skilled trades training.  Making the top 10 are elevator mechanic, utilities manager, pipefitting supervisor, and mining and forestry managers. Many of these trades earn over $100,000 per year after several years of experience. With the rising cost of living and saturation of university degrees, people are increasingly looking at skilled vocational training as an economically superior return on investment for their education.

Skilled NACE Inspectors

If you have a project, for example with greenhouse and concrete fertilizer tanks, a protective coating will require niche industry expertise. Most companies don’t have this in-house and don’t know what they don’t know. Some considerations that you need in such a scenario are coating type, surface preparation, preventative and scheduled maintenance, and inspection.  The Coating Inspector can provide that level of expertise and assurance in supporting your internal team, goals, and protecting your assets.  

During the COVID-19 pandemic, The Coating Inspector follows all public health standards, keeping your assets safe while keeping your staff safe with social distancing, virtual meetings, and utilizing personal protective equipment. 

Hire A Skilled Coating Inspector For Your Project

Do you have a need for coating inspection or consulting? If you have an industrial facility, it’s likely you need protective coating, coating inspection and regular maintenance to ensure the efficiency and protection of your equipment. During these times we can consult you initially on the phone or via a zoom meeting to assess your needs. From there, we dispatch a NACE-certified inspector to inspect your facility and work with your team.

Reach out today and book your consultation. 


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Scott Menzies

Scott menzies

Owner, The Coating Inspector