Home Depot tries to help its best customers find workers

The Home Depot wants more people to consider new careers in the building trades as some of its top customers need new hires.

America’s largest home improvement chain said it has created a virtual training program to help its Dallas-Fort Worth business clients find workers.

Starting Monday, The Home Depot is offering free vocational training for skilled trades such as welders, electricians and carpenters. The “Path to Pro Skills Program” also provides career support and access to employment with Home Depot business customers.

Home Depot benefits from the good functioning of its business customers. In this tight labor market, that means having enough workers. While only 4% of the company’s customers are people who make a living renovating and maintaining the residential market, they account for 45% of Home Depot’s annual sales.

“Once people have completed the course, we help introduce graduates to our professional entrepreneur clients, or Pros, for them to hire and help fill the manpower shortage they face,” Home Depot spokesperson Margaret Smith said.

The program is not for Home Depot hiring and job postings, she said. It is “more market driven than procurement and the business around us”.

Job seekers advance at their own pace in an instructor-led boot camp that covers topics such as jobsite safety, tools, building materials, team building and communication skills.

The program is free and open to anyone 18 years of age or older with a valid driver’s license and internet access. At the end of the training, participants have access to The Home Depot’s network of potential employers. here is a link to register.

The Atlanta-based retailer also caters to its business customers with a personalized online experience, a dedicated sales force, delivery, credit and inventory management programs.

Employers intervene to help workers acquire the skills they need in the labor market. Walmart, and more recently Target, offer tuition and other perks that were previously perks for white-collar jobs.

Home Depot’s training offering is the latest example of a company helping its own customers find workers. Malls and malls have held job fairs and posted job vacancies on their websites to help their tenant retailers find new employees.

Home Depot has a few other inventive programs that look to the future by targeting teens. He partnered with Girl Scouts of the USA to create workshops in the building trades. The retailer’s foundation has a similar program with 100 Black Men of America Inc. that targets black youth.

A hiring sign at the NorthPark Center Express store in Dallas.

Twitter: @MariaHalkias

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