Skills Shortage: Calls for more promotion of construction sector
The construction sector has started to boom once more, however data demonstrates vacancies within the industry have increased by almost 40% in the last year.
According to the Office of National Statistics there were 18,000 vacancies in the first quarter of 2014 which is an increase of 5,000 on the same period in 2013.
We’re all aware it’s been a struggle in the construction sector since the recession, and OBAS like many companies in our industry has had to endure our fair share of adversity over this time. The sector still employs around 2.1 million people and schemes such as Help To Buy have helped however the construction sector has still contracted by around 16% in the last 3 and a ½ years, which means a lot of people have taken their skills out of the industry and many of them won’t be coming back.
The Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) is tasked with promoting the industry to potential entrants and it’s fair to say they’re facing an uphill task to convince people that construction is a stable and viable long term career option.
Stephen Radley, director of policy and strategic planning at the CITB said “We need to be better at selling careers in construction; we need to be promoting it in schools, to apprentices, across all agencies. The Government is freeing up planning regulations and acting on infrastructure projects. If they deliver on those then it will send a powerful signal to companies to invest in training.”
Radley went on to say that the government’s target of 240,000 new homes a year by 2016 won’t be hit if the skills shortage in the sector isn't addressed.