In the construction sector, there is an increasing call for skilled workers to meet the rising demand from the UK sector.
With calls for 2.78m construction workers by 2026 expected to fall short, the repercussions will be felt by you and your housebuilding business.
Chief Exec of the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) Tim Balcon recently warned that the construction sector is in serious need to “attract and retain top-level talent”.
Despite this, there are claims that it will be a “major task to respond to the call for higher skilled workers”.
This article is not only aimed at highlighting the reasons for the skill shortages within the sector but will also provide a means to help alleviate the challenges faced by a lack of skilled workers.
An Ageing Workforce
The largest percentage of the house building sector are aged between 45-54 years. The second largest group, consisting of 22% is made up of 35-50 years, according to a report by the Manpower Group.
With retirement on the horizon for a large portion of the sector, there’s a huge need for greater numbers. The issue is, the sector has been struggling to fill roles for years, and the latest generation isn’t showing a considered interest in construction.
Fewer than one-third of Gen-Z respondents would consider a career in the built environment and the perception is the work is dirty and dangerous.
As workers retire, so does the access to and knowledge of their skillset. With fewer workers coming through the system, the gap will widen, causing shockwaves of delays and even financial penalties throughout the sector.
Brexit, COVID & The Great Resignation: The Impact On House Builders
Now, post-Brexit-deal, 8 years after the vote and with a strict points-based immigration system in place, that number has reduced.
Between 2017 and the end of 2020, there was a 42% fall in the number of EU workers in the sector to around 127,000.
This parallels the data that estimates 1.3 million workers left the UK construction sector since 2019, forcing 25% of business owners into citing Brexit as a key factor in the lack of skilled workers.
The Great Resignation is playing a significant role too. As millions look for more “autonomy or meaning in their work”, there are no signs of resignations slowing.
While construction itself is booming, reaching a record high in Q1 2022, the lack of available and skilled workforce may still impact the growth of the sector.
Wage Inflation Affecting High Skill Availability
The lure of higher pay compounds the problem further.
If there is increased demand for a limited pool, the businesses willing to pay over the odds will likely reap the rewards.
Total pay in the construction sector rose 6.3% from April to June, according to the ONS, but despite the increase, there’s still a historically high number of vacancies in the sector.
This rise is much faster than other sectors, including manufacturing (4.1%), which emphasises the call for skilled work.
Overcoming These Challenges
It’s not the first time the sector has faced these challenges, and it certainly won’t be the last.
Finding means of overcoming puts businesses in much stronger positions, after all, you shouldn’t let a ‘lack of workers’ contribute to your business’s reputation.
Instead, consider how suppliers can take the pressure off, allowing products to be installed with a lower level of skill. This relies on finding partners who focus on quality services, with the aim being your success.
Conducting their own site surveys, expertise in manufacturing and dry assembling products prior to dispatch ensures when materials arrive on site, they require very little input.
Not only will this reduce the project timeline, but it’ll be also better for your bottom line, too. You don’t need to pay over the odds for a diminishing pool of skilled workers, you can make savings without jeopardizing quality.
Multi-Turn has over 30 years of experience and knowledge, offered through a service called staircase success, allowing you to meet the demands of the housebuilding sector through high-quality bespoke staircases.
Find out more by speaking to our team at 01962 712299 or emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org.