The construction industry is one of the country’s leading economic drivers and a shortage of skills could create a significant risk to continued planned expansion.
Equipping the UK with a well-trained efficient productive construction workforce has never been more important, particularly as highly experienced people are leaving the workforce due to retirement. It is, in fact, estimated that approximately 80,000 people are required annually to the existing construction workforce.
Skills shortages raise concern especially when considering the ambitious government targets that have been set for the industry. A total of three million new houses are to be built by 2020. This means that annually, 240,000 new homes must be built in England from 2017.
Let’s take a look at some facts to help contextualise the challenge:
- Construction companies could improve connections with colleges – a survey revealed that the construction industry is not so attractive to school leavers, college students as well as graduates as other sectors.
- There will come a time in the near future were generations will work side by side and there will need to be a certain level of understanding for each other. By 2020, over 50% of the workforce are expected to be Generation Y members who have grown up connected, collaborative and mobile, but how many are highly skilled in specific trades? An effective workforce strategy needs to include a mentoring programme to share knowledge.
- Retirement at 65 is no longer the norm as the industry is facing a time bomb if it fails to replace retiring workers. More than 400,000 highly experienced and skilled workers are set to retire within the next 5 to 10 years. How many of your workers fall into this category?
The construction industry must adopt a new workforce strategy which includes the engagement of young people to attract them into the profession otherwise the industry will face serious skill-shortages, which will have a detrimental impact on development and the industry.
Additionally creating a 5 and 10 year workforce strategy which identifies the retiring category will be imperative in order to develop a recruitment strategy. If you’d like to discuss how to start building your future workforce email firstname.lastname@example.org