There are currently an estimated 70,200 ironworkers in the United States. The ironworker job market is expected to grow by 12.8% between 2016 and 2026.

How employable are ironworkers?

CareerExplorer rates ironworkers with a D employability rating, meaning this career should provide weak employment opportunities for the foreseeable future. Over the next 10 years, it is expected the US will need 16,500 ironworkers. That number is based on 9,000 additional ironworkers, and the retirement of 7,500 existing ironworkers.

Are ironworkers in demand?

Only modest job growth and demand is projected for ironworkers. Most opportunities in the field will result from the need to replace retirees. As is the case for many other construction workers, employment of ironworkers is sensitive to economic fluctuations. When the overall level of construction falls, so too do employment levels. Conversely, during peak periods of building activity it is not uncommon for ironworker demand to outpace supply. The ongoing need to rehabilitate, maintain, or replace aging highways, bridges, and other structures is expected to lead to some openings. Jobs in this sector of the occupation, however, are reliant upon government funding and sometimes fall victim to reduced budgets. Positions are typically more plentiful in metropolitan areas and in cities and towns that are expected to grow and require more infrastructure. Employment may vary from season to season in geographic regions where weather conditions preclude work from being done during certain winter periods. Job candidates who are certified in welding and rigging, familiar with concrete reinforcement, and willing to relocate are likely to encounter the best prospects.

What’s the supply of ironworkers?

The ironworker industry is concentrated in California, Texas, New York

Ironworker job market by state

State Name Employed Ironworkers
California 8,710
Texas 8,680
New York 6,240
Florida 3,850
Ohio 3,720
Louisiana 2,760
Illinois 2,730
Pennsylvania 1,930
Indiana 1,890
Arizona 1,770
Colorado 1,700
Michigan 1,680
Missouri 1,610
Utah 1,580
Georgia 1,560
Virginia 1,500
Washington 1,440
Wisconsin 1,410
Minnesota 1,360
North Carolina 1,330
Massachusetts 1,310
New Jersey 1,300
Alabama 1,260
Kentucky 1,110
Tennessee 1,040
Oklahoma 980
Nebraska 920
South Dakota 870
Arkansas 850
South Carolina 850
Oregon 780
Iowa 700
Maryland 630
Nevada 470
Kansas 470
Mississippi 440
Connecticut 400
Puerto Rico 360
Idaho 280
New Mexico 280
Maine 250
West Virginia 220
Delaware 220
Hawaii 190
North Dakota 190
Rhode Island 180
New Hampshire 170
Alaska 150
Montana 130
District of Columbia 130
Vermont 90
Wyoming 80