Empowering women in construction and maintenance

Picture a world where women lead the construction and maintenance industries and make them more inclusive and innovative.

The truth is that it’s happening now and the impact is big. Women in these traditionally male dominated industries bring diversity, drive economic growth and new thinking to infrastructure projects.

You might be thinking about the challenges women face in these environments. Addressing the gender gap is important not just for equality but for the creativity and problem solving skills women bring to the table. By sharing success stories and resources we can encourage more women to break down barriers and go into construction and maintenance.

You play a part in this transformation whether you’re in the industry or support it. Advocating for equal opportunities and a diverse workforce means better outcomes and a stronger community. The journey to a balanced representation of women in construction and maintenance is long but every step counts.

Historical context and current state

Women have faced many challenges in the construction and maintenance industries. Despite progress there is still under representation and understanding the journey and current state is key to moving forward.

The Evolution of Women in Construction

Historically women were rarely seen in construction. In the early 20th century gender specific careers were the norm and women were relegated to jobs deemed suitable for their gender.

World War II was a turning point when women entered the workforce to fill the gaps left by men who went to fight. “Rosie the Riveter” became an icon of women in manufacturing and construction.

In the decades that followed women’s presence in construction grew slowly but traditional gender roles often pushed them into administrative or support roles rather than on site roles. The late 20th and early 21st century saw more proactive efforts to break down these barriers including organizations advocating for women’s rights in construction and initiatives promoting women in skilled trades.

Women in the Field Statistics

As of recent data women make up 10.9% of the construction workforce in the US. While this is an increase from previous decades it’s still a long way to go.

Of those women 3% work in the trades such as electricians, carpenters and plumbers. Most women in construction are in project management, office support and administration.

The pay gap also exists with women earning 95% of what men earn for the same roles. Despite the increase in participation there is still much work to be done to create a fair and inclusive environment.

Comparison to Other Industries

Compared to other sectors construction is still behind in gender diversity. For example women make up 47% of the overall US workforce but are under represented in construction and maintenance roles.

Industries like healthcare and education have gender balances that are more favorable to women with 76% and 74% of the workforce being female respectively. STEM fields are still male dominated but have higher percentages of women than construction so progress is being made in different industries.

So while some progress has been made in construction other industries show the scale of the opportunities for growth and improvement in this sector.


You may face specific barriers such as gender bias and the need for inclusive policies in the construction and maintenance industries. Remove these obstacles to create a women friendly environment.

Challenging Gender Bias and Stereotypes

Gender bias and stereotypes are big barriers. These can manifest in hiring practices, daily interactions and promotional opportunities. We need to call them out.

Training programs can help raise awareness of gender bias. Education on stereotypes can create a more inclusive culture. Have these programs at every level of the business so everyone is on the same page.

Promote and showcase women in their roles. Visibility and representation challenges stereotypes. Mentorship programs can support women and help them navigate these biases.

Women Friendly Workplaces

A women friendly workplace is key to success. It’s about creating a space where women feel safe, valued and respected. Start with simple things like having women’s toilets and changing facilities.

Flexible working can help women balance career and family. This means part time roles, flexible hours and maternity leave.

Open communication channels. Allow employees to speak up without fear of retribution. Regular feedback mechanisms and anonymous reporting will help keep the environment positive.

Policies for Inclusion

Inclusion policies will remove systemic barriers. Having clear policies that promote diversity and inclusion will bring long term change. Policies should cover hiring practices, pay equity and career progression.

Set targets for diversity at every level. Measure and hold leaders accountable. This will keep everyone focused and drive change.

Workshops and training will educate employees on the importance of inclusion. Create a culture where everyone knows and lives the values. An informed workforce is better equipped to buy into and implement inclusivity initiatives.

By calling out these barriers you will help create a more inclusive women friendly industry for construction and maintenance.

Empowerment and growth

To succeed in construction and maintenance women need targeted support from education to work life balance and networks.

Education and Training

You need access to good education and training to excel in construction and maintenance. Vocational schools, apprenticeships and certification programs will give you the skills you need. For example being knowledgeable on a Guide to Penetrating Damp Solutions can be the difference between a build that fails and one that succeeds.

Continuing education will keep you up to date with industry trends and technology. Many organizations now offer scholarships and sponsorships to get women into these programs and break down the gender barriers.

Leadership and Career Progression

Career progression means taking on leadership roles and responsibilities. Companies can support this by having leadership training programs for women. Mentorship from senior female leaders will also help. Recognition and reward for your work will encourage more women to aim for higher roles in the business.

Networking and Mentorship

Build a network of supportive professionals and you’ll have guidance and opportunities. Industry conferences, workshops and online forums are great platforms. Being part of these communities will give you insights and mentors. These relationships will open doors to new job opportunities and career progression. You may also consider joining professional organizations for women in construction and maintenance.

Work-life Balance

Work-life balance is key to your overall well being and career growth. Flexible working such as flexi-time and remote working will help you manage your personal and professional commitments. Companies that offer full maternity leave and childcare support show they are committed to supporting women in the workforce. These will help you thrive at work and at home.

Construction and maintenance roles

In construction and maintenance there are many roles that vary in skill level, responsibilities and area of expertise. Here are a few.


  1. Architect: Designs buildings and structures, makes sure they are functional, safe and look good.
  2. Civil Engineer: Designs, builds and maintains building structures and infrastructure.
  3. Construction Manager: Manages a construction project from start to finish.
  4. Project Manager: Manages everything in a project, budgeting, scheduling and resource allocation.
  5. Site Supervisor: Manages on site operations, makes sure work is done safely and to plan.
  6. Surveyor: Measures and maps land for construction projects.
  7. Electrician: Installs and maintains electrical systems in buildings and infrastructure.
  8. Plumber: Installs and repairs water supply and waste systems.
  9. Carpenter: Builds and repairs building frameworks and structures.
  10. Mason: Builds structures from individual units, usually bricks or stones.
  11. Welder: Joins metal together, often in buildings, bridges and other structures.
  12. Heavy Equipment Operator: Operates machinery used in construction, bulldozers, cranes and excavators.


  1. Maintenance Technician: Does routine maintenance and repairs on equipment and facilities.
  2. Facilities Manager: Manages maintenance and operation of buildings and grounds.
  3. HVAC Technician: Installs, maintains and repairs heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems.
  4. Electrical Maintenance Technician: Maintains and repairs electrical systems and equipment.
  5. Plumbing Maintenance Technician: Maintains and repairs plumbing systems.
  6. Building Maintenance Worker: Does general repairs and maintenance of buildings.
  7. Groundskeeper: Maintains the grounds and outdoor areas of a property.
  8. Janitor/Custodian: Keeps buildings clean and tidy, does cleaning and minor maintenance.
  9. Snow Clearing Operator: Operates machinery for snow clearing services on roads, pathways and other areas.

Driving innovation and economic growth

Empowering women in construction and maintenance drives innovation and economic growth. Women bring fresh perspectives and diverse problem-solving skills, enhancing these traditionally male-dominated fields.