A survey revealed that the construction industry is not so attractive to school leavers, college students as well as graduates as other sectors. Over 20% of respondents stated lack of suitable vocational courses available and limited apprenticeships. Lack of promotion in the industry made it less appealing than other careers and no investment in schools or colleges in young people is certainly not helping the industry.
Inadequate career development, site and working conditions, demand for work not always consistent, salary and wages not high enough in comparison to other industries, poor retention of workforce and unwillingness to train and recruit from other sectors are all reasons which hinder the younger generation from entering the construction industry workforce.
The industry must appeal to young people and focus on making the industry more appealing by emphasising that the quality of training is good, the construction worker is currently in demand, there is opportunity for career progression, opportunity to work outside of the industry, salaries are good and the industry welcomes diversity.
The growing population will lead to increased consumption within the UK, which will create extra jobs in the construction sector.
Opportunity awareness is crucial when choosing a career
It is important to choose a career for ‘in demand jobs’ there is a global demand for construction workers, for example, the US will add approximately 10 million jobs by 2020, and it is estimated that 5 million of the jobs created will be in sectors such as healthcare, business and construction.
A dangerous issue for the industry, particularly in London, is when housing is too expensive – this means that if well-educated workers (especially younger workers) leave the UK for better prospects in foreign labour markets, it could reduce the number of eligible candidates for high-skill jobs in the construction industry, for example, architects, surveyors and engineers.
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