ARLINGTON, Va. – The Wireless Infrastructure Association (WIA) is pleased to share a few key results from WIA member company Sitetracker in its 2020 Telecom Infrastructure Provider Outlook, which touches on the industry’s workforce and COVID-19’s impact on it.
“In these uncertain times, it’s helpful to
see this pulse-check on the industry. One staggering statistic is that ‘72% of
survey respondents were concerned about skills shortages and finding and
retaining talent,’” said WIA President and CEO Jonathan Adelstein. “It’s no
surprise so many companies are recognizing that the skills gap is an obstacle
to 5G deployment, with the survey finding the number one challenge to deploying
5G is ‘having quality people/contractors to do the work.’ WIA has prepared the
ground to bring new talent into our industry through public-private partnerships.
We’re helping our members develop on-the-job training through apprenticeship,
like the Telecommunications Industry Registered Apprenticeship Program (TIRAP),
so that the workforce is equipped and skilled to build 5G. We’re also seeing
how COVID-19 is impacting the workforce, and we’ll seek ways to bring new
talent into our industry, which will continue to grow even as others contract.”
“WIA is also addressing the concern that many
jurisdictions rely on paper filings or in-person permitting processes, which
could be impacted by furloughed workers or fewer office hours, and WIA is working
with federal, state, and local policymakers to address these issues. We are
bringing that directly to the attention of the FCC and the White House as we
speak,” said Adelstein.
Sitetracker found that 44% of carriers
believe COVID-19 will increase demand for telecom infrastructure as more
work-from-home polices are put in place. “At the very least, recent changes in
our work lives highlight the importance of communications infrastructure,” the
Recent changes to work-from-home policies
have not generally impacted infrastructure providers’ ability to deploy or
maintain networks, survey respondents said. However, providers are concerned
that government permitting offices could be an obstacle in getting
“We appreciate Sitetracker’s leadership in
giving visibility into what’s happening on the ground,” said Adelstein.
Contact Brett Chester at email@example.com for more information on the report.
To learn more about what WIA is doing to
solve the telecommunications workforce skills gap, click
March 26, 2020
Amy-Gabrielle Bartolac | Public Affairs Manager
Amy-Gabrielle.Bartolac@wia.org | 703-621-0527
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