Drive for more construction workers launched to meet housing target

A new scheme aimed at boosting the building sector has been launched to promote awareness of the varied career opportunities in construction for young people.

The 2021 government housing target means that successful recruitment of UK workers into the construction industry is top of the agenda.

The pioneering scheme, launched by Considerate Constructors, brings together best practice examples and a variety of resources that can be used by anyone in the industry to help address the skills shortage, as well as links to a number of organisations who can help to engage young people and hit Corporate and Social Responsibility (CSR) targets.

A survey of around 800 construction professionals in the UK and Ireland by the Considerate Constructors Scheme revealed that 85% would now recommend a construction career to young people, while 53% said they knew young people who are or could be interested in a construction career. However, 69% said the industry is not doing enough to attract the next generation of workers, which is where the ‘Spotlight on… the next generation’ campaign comes in.

Britain needs 400,000 new recruits to meet demand

With an ageing workforce and Brexit placing uncertainty over the future of EU workers, it has never been more important to encourage young people into the industry to fill the skills shortage. Arcadis recently reported that Britain needs to employee 400,000 people per annum over the next three years in order to meet the country’s housing and infrastructure needs.

There are also a range of case studies from a variety of contractors and organisations who are doing great work to entice the next generation into the industry. The case studies include contributions from leading contractors: Balfour Beatty; Engie; Gilbert-Ash; Hobson + Porter; Kier; Laing O’Rourke; Mace; McLaughlin and Harvey; Midland Metro Alliance and Wates, as well as industry organisation and scheme supporter Class Of Your Own.

Changing the image of a job in construction is a work in progress

Edward Hardy, chief executive of the Considerate Constructors Scheme, said: “The shortage of new entrants into the workforce is one of the most pressing issues facing the construction industry. With over 400,000 new recruits needed each year to deliver construction projects, we must all take steps to attract the next generation.

“While we do have a great industry, one that is working hard to improve its image – as evidenced by the fact that 85% of those within the industry would recommend a career in construction – we need to do so much more to continually improve our standards in order to drive the perception change much needed to make the industry more attractive.”

“The scheme’s Best Practice Hub is at the epicentre of helping to share best practice across construction. Through the ‘Spotlight on… the next generation’ campaign, we are delighted to use our reach and influence across the entire industry to help provide key resources to address this critical issue.”

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