National Apprenticeship Week and Bridging the Construction Skills Gap

The Scottish Build Apprenticeship and Training Council have reported that the number of Scottish apprentices registered in construction has reached a five year high. And CITB report that construction apprenticeships across Great Britain are up 12%, and have reached a six year high.

This week is National Apprenticeship Week #NAW2016. Emily Johnson, our Digital Marketing Apprentice has published a guest blog with CIMCIG entitled: A Digital Approach to Construction Marketing which summarises the recent CIMCIG seminar, Engage with your Customer. Emily is keen to hear of your apprenticeship experiences and opinions, especially in relation to construction marketing. You can join in the discussion on LinkedIn: Is there a place for marketing apprenticeships in construction?

BRE Academy have published survey findings which reveal industry views on the most acute construction skills gaps. Sustainability and environmental skills as well as trades such as plastering, electrical and plumbing are in short supply across construction. There is not only concern over a lack of traditional skills but also a concern over the lack of BIM and management skills, seen as key to future development.

RICS have spoken with several industry experts about what to expect in the surveying job market in 2016. RICS report that there is currently a shortage of qualified surveyors across all disciplines. This is especially true for mid-level roles, which is in part due to the decline in hiring at the junior level seen after the recession.

One suggestion to bridging the skills gap is to recruit more women into construction. Yet a report from Young Women’s Trust shows that there are 56 men to every woman in a construction based apprenticeship. The report also highlights that although overall more women are now entering into apprenticeships than men, they are paid less than their male counterparts and less likely to go on to gain employment.

Mark Beard, in an article for the Construction Index argues school visits are the way to tackle skills shortages saying “By stepping into the classroom and sharing insights about apprenticeships, work placements and our own career paths, we can help young people make informed choices. We can also advise them on the skill-sets and qualifications they’ll need to succeed in the digital construction world of the future.”

There is a wealth of energy being dedicated to answering the construction skills gap. One thing is sure, there is no quick fix. Only time will tell if we have the answer.



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