Posted in Job Search Advice 1 year ago

The UK Construction Skills Shortage, or a skills opportunity?


Construction is a major sector of the UK economy, employing in excess of 2.93 million people, equating to approximately the equivalent of 10% of UK employment. In 2008, over 140,000 jobs were shed by the construction industry. There is now a new challenge on the horizon for the construction industry where there is a major skills opportunity for those seeking a career in construction.

It is expected that 158,000 new construction jobs will be created in the UK over the next five years. Statistically, 15,350 carpenters and 9,350 labourers are needed over the next five years. With these new positions needed to be created, there will be a domino effect as there will be a significant need for growth in a range of profession and managerial roles.

How is the Construction Industry Training Board aiming to overcome the skills shortage?

In June 2018, The Construction Industry Training Board (CITB), together with the funding of the Department for Education, administered a £22million Construction Skills Fund. This fund has been launched to bring training to construction sites to help tackle the construction skills shortage, launched by the Skills Minister, Anne Milton. The fund will allow learners to apply their knowledge in a real-world environment.

 Skills Minister Anne Milton said:

“The Government has committed to building 300,000 new homes a year by the mid-2020s and we want to make sure that we are investing in the UK skills base to deliver this.”

 The retirement rate in construction is increasing as 22% of the workforce are over 50, proving the need for the Construction Skills Fund.

 What can be done to promote the construction sector?

To build up the awareness in young people and those seeking a change in career. It is imperative to build awareness of the variety of roles and positions within the construction sector. The Chartered Institute of Building and The Construction Industry Training Board are among the organisations raising awareness in schools and colleges.

 What are clients doing to make the youth aware of the skills shortage?

To overcome the skills shortage, the construction industry must appeal to highly skilled professionals and to the young who are looking to build a career. Construction provides the opportunity to work on tangible projects that build a sense of legacy.

Our client, Ballymore, has been ‘hosting the “Budding Architects” workshops for the pupils of Faraday School located moments away from our development Goodluck Hope’ – Ballymore.

Our client, Berkeley Group Plc have ‘opened the West London Construction Academy in partnerships with West London College and Ealing Council. This offers on the job training and a great start to a Built Environment career’ – Berkeley Group Plc.

On Thames Tideway, the contractors are being asked to fill at least 1 in 50 positions by apprentices and 1 in 100 is to be an ex-offender. CrossRail and The London Legacy Development Company are also setting similar high aspirations.

If you are thinking of changing careers, your skills can be transferred to the construction industry:

  • Oil and gas
  • IT
  • Engineering
  • Manufacturing
  • Finance and accountancy
  • Armed forces
  • Creative
  • Administration and customer service
  • Management and business

So, how can we help the construction sector through this skills shortage?

We can be the lifeline that our clients need for them to continue to focus on achieving their goals and strategies, whilst finding new talent. By doing so, we build up a rich portfolio and can deliver the missing skills.

For information on opportunities within the construction sector, please contact Hannah Jackson.

020 3947 3260


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