Statewide Associations

Associated General Contractors of Washington Associated General Contractors of Washington has over 500 member firms which consist of qualified construction contractors and industry related companies dedicated to skill, integrity, and responsibility.

Associated General Contractors of Washington Education Foundation The AGC of Washington Education Foundation promotes construction and provides educational opportunities for people within the industry.

Association of Washington Business AWB was established in 1904, and is the oldest business organization in the state. It serves as Washington's chamber of commerce.

Building Industry Association of Washington The Building Industry Association of Washington represents the housing industry in the state of Washington. The Association is dedicated to ensuring and enhancing the vitality of the building industry for the benefit of its members and the housing needs of the citizens.

Center for Learning Connections The Center for Learning Connections (CLC) designs training and manages projects with educators welfare and workforce development professionals, and community based organizations.

Washington Association of Building Officials Washington Association of Building Officials is a nonprofit, professional association of state, county, city and town officials engaged in the development, enforcement and administration of building construction codes and ordinances.

Washington State Labor Council The Washington State Labor Council, AFL-/CIO is the largest labor organization in the Evergreen State. A state federation of the AFL-CIO, the WSLC is a voluntary non-profit organization dedicated to protecting and strengthening the rights and conditions of working people and their families.

Washington Association of Career and Technical Administrators WACTA provides leadership to enhance and support Career and Technical Education in communities and schools..

Washington State Association of Career Technical Education WA-ACTE represents teachers, administrators, career guidance specialists and counselors, university professors, state/local employees, and students at middle, secondary, and postsecondary educational levels.

Washington State Building and Construction Trades Council The Washington State Building and Construction Trades Council, AFL-CIO, is a voluntary coalition of over 60 construction-related labor organizations.

State Government

These state organizations offer a variety of resources on their websites. 

Department of Labor and Industries - Apprenticeship Division The Department of Labor and Industries' Apprenticeship Division supplies information to individuals on how to become an apprentice, what the benefits are in becoming an apprentice, and other helpful data.

State Board for Community and Technical Colleges The State Board for Community and Technical College is responsible forproviding leadership and coordination to the community and technical college system. Washington Industrial Safety and Health Act The core rules of the Washington Industrial Safety and Health Act include requirements for the Accident Prevention Program, Personal Protective Equipment, First-Aid, and the Hazard Communication Program.

Washington State Department of Transportation Consulting Services The Washington State Department of Transportation Consulting Services administers an On-the-Job Training Supportive Services Program which covers the Eastern and Western Regions of Washington State.

Washington State Department of Employment Security Washington State DES is the largest and most comprehensive employment research resource for business owners, managers, workers and job seekers.

Washington State Workforce Training and Education Coordinating Board The Workforce Training and Education Coordinating Board is a state agency committed to the development of a highly skilled workforce that will sustain Washington's economic vitality.

Regional Government

Workforce Development Councils serve as intermediates for their industry, labor, and education partners. Benton-Franklin Workforce Development Council The Benton-Franklin Workforce Development Council (WDC) is responsible for coordinating the local workforce development programs, coordinating activities of the local employment and training One-stop centers, establishing a youth council, negotiating local performance standards, and developing a local workforce investment plan.

Eastern Washington Partnership Eastern Washington Partnership (EWP) Workforce Development Council designs and administers a workforce development system to meet the needs of employers, workers, job seekers, and youth in Ferry, Pend, Oreille, Garfield Stevens, Lincoln, Whitman, Columbia, Walla Walla and Asotin counties.

North Central Partnership The North Central Partnership offers unemployed and low skilled workers the opportunity to learn the skills employers want. At the Learning Centers in Wenatchee, Moses Lake, Othello and Brewster, SkillSource teaches workplace basics in cooperation with school districts, community colleges and employers. The NCP serves the Okanogan, Chelan, Douglas, Adams and Grant Counties. Northwest Workforce Development Council The Northwest Workforce Development Council, serving Island, San Juan, Skagit and Whatcom Counties, is dedicated to creating a skilled, successful workforce aligned to the needs of business and industry.

Olympic Workforce Development Area The Olympic Workforce Development Council works in partnership with the nine county commissioners of the Olympic Consortium Board to provide policy guidance and program oversight for the WIA activities within the service delivery area of Kitsap, Clallam and Jefferson Counties.

Pacific Mountain Workforce Development Area The Pacific Mountain Workforce Development Council works to increase employment, job retention, and earnings of participants. It is also dedicated to increase occupational skill attainment by participants, improve the quality of the workforce, reduce welfare dependency and enhance the productivity and competitiveness of the region. The Pacific Mountain Workforce Development Area is comprised of Grays Harbor, Mason, Thurston, Pacific and Lewis counties.

Pierce County Construction Partnership The Pierce County Construction Partnership is a business led, industry specific board. The Partnership is a collaborative endeavor to promote the industry, address construction workforce issues, and raise awareness of careers and training opportunities in Pierce County, Washington

Snohomish County Workforce Development Council The goals of the Snohomish County Workforce Development Council are to identify current and future industry-specific employment and skills training needs and to create or expand options for job growth and training in the County to meet these needs.

Southwest Washington Workforce Development Area The Southwest Washington Workforce Development Council provides leadership and resources to increase economic development with a trained and productive workforce in Clark, Cowlitz, and Wahkiakum Counties.

Spokane Area Workforce Development Council The Spokane Area Workforce Development Council is dedicated to lead a dynamic, demand-driven workforce system and to create innovative workforce solutions for the Spokane Region.

South Central Workforce Council South Central Workforce Council's mission is to establish, maintain, and improve a customer driven workforce system to increase skills, employment, job retention, and earnings resulting in a quality workforce, enhanced productivity, and profitability of Workforce Area businesses. It is also known as the Yakima Department of Employment & training and serves Yakima, Kittitas, Klickitat, and Skamania counties.

Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County The Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County focuses on serving the needs ofsurrounding businesses and employers throughout the county. It also plays a major role in convening industry, education and labor leaders around industry-specific issues and finding solutions to the problems identified by the partners.

Unemployment by BusinessWeek The Unemployment section on BusinessWeek’s new topic-based site, Business Exchange, was built to foster educational collaboration, awareness and the exchange of free information. This topic features thousands of free news articles, blog posts and authoritative reference materials from sources across the Web. It offers numerous resources that allow students and individuals to research Unemployment by providing free access to industry experts and their submitted reference materials.

National Government

These national organizations offer a variety of resources on their websites. Occupational Safety and Health Administration The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is dedicated to having every worker go home whole and healthy every day.

US Environmental Protection Agency Since 1970 the Environmental Protection Agency's mission has been to protect human health and the environment.

US Department of Labor The Department of Labor fosters and promotes the welfare of the job seekers, wage earners, and retirees in the US by improving their working conditions, advancing their opportunities for profitable employment, protecting their retirement and health care benefits, helping employers find workers, strengthening free collective bargaining, and tracking changes in employment, prices, and other national economic measurements.

National Associations

American Institute of ArchitectsThe American Institute of Architects was founded in 1857 and has represented the professional interests of America's architects.

American Planning Association The American Planning Association is a nonprofit public interest and research organization representing 39,000 practicing planners, officials, and citizens involved with urban and rural planning issues.

American Society of Civil Engineers The American Society of Building Engineers (ASCE) represents more than 137,500 members and is the oldest national engineering society in America.

American Subcontractors Association The American Subcontractors Association Inc. is an IRS section 501(c)(6) nonprofit, national, membership trade association of 5,500 subcontractors, specialty trade contractors and suppliers in the construction industry.

American General Contractors of America The Associated General Contractors of America is an organization of construction contractors and industry related companies operating in partnership with its Chapters.

Construction Industry Round Table The Construction Industry Round Table (CIRT) is comprised of approximately 100 CEOs from architectural, engineering and construction firms doing business in the United States.

Construction Management Association of America The Construction Management Association of America promotes construction management as a professional discipline adding value to the entire construction process.

Construction Specifications Institute CSI is a national association of specifiers, architects, engineers, contractors, building materials suppliers and others involved.

Construction Users Round Table The Construction Users Round Table is an organization that provides a forum for the exchange of information, views, practices and policies of various owners at the national level..

Energy & Environmental Building Association Energy & Environmental Building Association provides education and resources for the residential design, development and construction industries to deliver energy efficiency and environmentally responsible buildings and communities.

National Association of Home Builders NAHB represents the building industry by serving its members and affiliated state and local builders associations.

National Frame Builders Association The NFBA website is a resource for the post-frame (a.k.a., "pole building") industry.

National Home Builders Institute The Home Builders Institute is the workforce development arm of the National Association of Home Builders.

National Institute of Standards and Technology National Institute of Standards and Technology is a non-regulatory federal agency with promoting industrial competitiveness through measurement science, standards, and technology.

Labor Market Information

Construction labor shortages, and projected workforce needs, are tracked through these organizations: National Resources

  • Bureau of Labor Statistics: The U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics is the principal fact-finding agency for the Federal Government in the broad field of labor economics and statistics.

State Resources

  • Workforce Explorer: The Workforce Explorer website is maintained by the Labor Market and Economic Analysis Division of the Washington State Employment Security Department. It provides current economic conditions and local area profiles for Washington's labor markets.

Labor Councils

NW Region Labor Council

  • King County Labor Council, AFL-CIO: The King County Labor Council, AFL-CIO, is the central body of labor organizations in King County, Washington. They are affiliated with the National AFL-CIO, the central labor organization in the United States.
  • Northwest Washington Central Labor Council, AFL-CIO: The Northwest Washington Central Labor Council, AFL-CIO, is the central body of labor organizations in Whatcom, Skagit and San Juan counties in Washington.
  • Snohomish County Labor Council, AFL-CIO: The Snohomish County Labor Council, AFL/CIO, is a federation of 63 AFL/CIO unions in Snohomish County.
  • Northwest Washington Central Labor Council 360.676.0099
  • Olympic Labor Council 360.417.8964

SW Region Labor Councils

  • Clark, Skamania and West Klickitat Counties Central Labor Council 360.921.7484
  • Cowlitz-Wahkiakum Counties Labor Council 360.423.0950
  • Grays Harbor County Labor Council 360.532.2643
  • Pacific County Labor Council 360.942.3316
  • Thurston-Lewis-Mason Counties Labor Council 360.520.9575

Central Region Labor Councils

  • North Central Washington Central Labor Council 509.662.7912
  • Yakima South Central Counties Central Labor Council 509.248.3894

East Region Labor Councils

  • Southeastern Washington Labor Council 509.547.7553
  • Spokane Regional Labor Council, AFL-CIO 509.327.7637

Spokane Construction Industry Skill Panel

The Spokane Construction Industry Skill Panel was convened in November 2004 by the Community Colleges of Spokane’s Institute for Extending Learning and many other partners in business, labor, and government. Its goal is to ensure the continued growth and viability of the Spokane region’s construction industry. The skill panel is addressing several concerns, among which are:

  • The aging local construction workforce, with 20% of the existing workforce expected to retire in the next four years.
  • A significant decrease in the numbers of young people who are choosing to enter vocational careers in general, and the construction industry in particular.
  • Projections from the US Department of Labor indicating that the construction industry will continue to grow in the foreseeable future, adding one million new jobs by the year 2012.
  • Rapid growth of the construction industry in the Spokane region, which currently has many jobs available for a shrinking workforce.

To date the skill panel has:

  • Continued to recruit additional panel members, and views recruiting as an ongoing process.
  • Developed preliminary strategies including designing a mobile display unit focused on interesting young people in construction careers.
  • Convened focus groups of public school students to identify what is necessary to make marketing materials and educational or training displays and events interesting to persons in their age group — in other words, identifying the sorts of materials, displays and events that will engage young people.
  • Developed and delivered a special half-day event designed to interest young women in construction careers. Because of this event’s success, more are planned for the future.
  • Defined some local and regional factors that are causing the decline in numbers of young people entering the construction workforce. Among them are:
    • Parental pressure to “go to college” (i.e., obtain a university education) and not “work with your hands.”
    • High School counselors who encourage students to attend college or university, rather than pursue professional-technical (formerly “vocational”) careers.
    • A decline in the number of meaningful “vocational” or “shop” courses that are offered in the public schools.
    • The stereotypical negative image of the construction trades.

South Central Workforce Development Council Skills Panel

The South Central WDC Construction Skills Panel (serving Kittitas, Klickitat, and Yakima Counties), along with the Laborers’, Carpenters’, Sheet Metal Workers, Painters, Yakima Valley Community College, Yakama Nation, and the Associated General Contractors were successful in their application for the Statewide Apprenticeship Training Grant, locally referred to as TAPIT (Tri-County Apprenticeship, Pre-apprenticeship, and Incumbent Worker Training). These funds have provided the opportunity to train both unemployed workers for entry into employment and/or apprenticeship and incumbent workers within the building trades.

Responsibilities include the following:

  • Develop a career ladder training for the Construction Industry.
  • Development and delivery of the core curricula customized by the construction trades.
  • Development and delivery of customized training as defined by the industry for incumbent apprentices and journeymen.
  • Allocation of training resources and selection of training providers.
  • Identify specific training needed to fill jobs where skill gaps arise.

Recent accomplishments include:

  • 52 unemployed workers received core construction training and 96% of those attained credentials.
  • 415 incumbent apprentices and/or journeymen have upgraded skills and 99.6% attained credentials.
  • Yakima Valley Community College developing vocational ESL classes to commence in fall 2005.
  • Assisted Yakama Nation Housing Authority in developing a Building Apprenticeship Training (BAT) program with the AGC and Department of Labor.
  • Development of a Mentoring Program for Native Americans interested in the Construction Industry.
  • Currently expanding efforts to link high school students to the Construction Industry via the Tri-County Youth Council.

Snohomish County Construction Careers Partnership

The Snohomish County Construction Careers Partnership was initiated by the Snohomish County Workforce Development Council in late 2004, as a way of convening local business, labor, industry associations, apprenticeship, education, and other partners interested in workforce needs for the construction industry. The goals of the Snohomish County Construction Careers Partnership are to:

  • Identify current and future industry-specific employment skills and training needs and
  • Create or expand options for job growth and training in the County to meet these needs.

The Partnership's motto is: "Construction...a great career choice!"

The following highlight recent accomplishments:

  • Organized and hosted the "Construction Business Opportunities Breakfast Conference - Winter Olympic Games" for over 100 Washington and Oregon construction industry business people,
  • Spearheaded the establishment of a Construction Project Management Certificate program offered by Washington State University at the University Center at Everett Station, and
  • On-going construction industry promotion campaign through speaking engagements, public TV, and local newspaper articles.

New! The Snohomish WDC has launched an initiative called "Career Trees," which visually represent pathways in the county's high demand industries, including construction.

Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County

The Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County (SKWDC) In 2000, SKWDC was part of a three-area construction skill panel emphasizing the promotion of career paths for potential and incumbent workers. Since then, the SKWDC’s Youth Council identified construction career pathways as a viable and successful route for young people in their area. SKWDC also conducted an extensive, county-wide analysis of the industry, finding continued growth and high wages. Construction is in the top 12 industries showing the highest numbers of job vacancies in King County.

Based on this analysis of the construction sector as well a the current priorities of the WDC Youth Council, the 2005-2006 WDC strategy for the construction sector includes the following:

  • Focus construction efforts on the older youth (18-21) population, particularly out-of-school youth.
  • Identify and target new employer and apprenticeship partnerships in the construction sector, focusing on developing connections to big public works projects.
  • Increase linkages with existing youth programs that provide work experience, training, and internships in the construction sector.

Visit the Youth@Work website and read the report at:

The Safety Training Center The Safety Training Center is a broad-based coalition of labor, business and public entities are establishing a state-of-the-art Safety Training Center. The Center will be housed at South Seattle Community College, Duwamish Apprenticeship and Education Center, and will the safety needs of construction, transportation and manufacturing.

Pierce County Construction Partnership

In 2002, the Tacoma-Pierce County Employment and Training Consortium convened contractors, associations, labor, apprenticeship, economic development, education, and community-based organizations to promote construction employment and training. The Pierce County Construction Partnership works on behalf of and reports to the Employment and Training Consortium. The Partnership has marshaled over $2 million in public and private resources to implement creative solutions to meet the partnership’s strategic goals, which include:

  • Develop and maintain a private and public partnership to respond to construction industry’s workforce needs
  • Increase the pool of skilled construction professionals
  • Increase training capacity at all levels via traditional and innovative training mechanisms
  • Enhance retention within the construction industry
  • Provide information that enables the educational community to keep construction related curriculum relevant and current
  • Create and maintain awareness to a diverse audience of what occupations and career ladders are available within the construction industry

The Partnership’s activities in 2004-2005 included:

  • ACE Academy
  • Awareness Marketing Campaign
  • Get Electrified School to Electrical Apprenticeship Program
  • Frame Your Future School to Carpentry Apprenticeship Program
  • Pierce College Construction Management Program
  • Pierce County Construction Partnership Recognition Event
  • Statewide Construction Conference for Educators & Industry Representatives, in collaboration with the Renton Technical College Construction Center of Excellence
  • Tacoma School District Construction Trades Career Pathway
  • Youth Workforce Development Initiative

Construction Skill Panels

Industry skill panels are public/private partnerships of business, labor, and education working together to improve the skills of workers in industries vital to Washington. These panels address workforce trends by creating projects in their local areas, which can be shared through the Construction Center of Excellence (CCE) and replicated in other parts of the state. Similarly, the CCE initiates training and services that can meet local skill panel needs. This relationship fosters real-time response to current skill gaps and projected economic drivers.

To learn more about Washington's Skill Panels, select a link below: