Labor shortages are already stressing a handful of markets, and it's a problem that will only get harder to solve as building activity accelerates: Like many roofing contractors these days, Collis Roofing, a central-Florida based roofing company, is struggling to find skilled workers to fill open positions. Focusing on the topic that comes first in roofing, Collis Roofing plans to roll out a series of safety training videos before the end of summer.

It takes a big effort to develop a training program, but as the shortage of skilled labor continues to hamper the comeback, it's an approach more companies may adopt. To help, the American Express Open Forum blog offers small businesses tips for how to approach the task of developing web-based training. Also, although it's a bit generic, Quality Digest seconds the advice, but it reminds business owners of important limits to digital video- and computer-based training.

When it works, though, video--even training video--can be captivating. John Reese, third generation owner of Reese Wholesale, an Indianapolis-based roofing and siding supplier, offers a compelling example of what a roofer's safety training video should look like. With a few updates, it could serve as the foundation for getting your own safety training program off to a start. The key to it's effectiveness as a training tool is authority: It was developed by someone who knows how to climb a roof and isn't afraid to tell it like it is in the trade.