Combined Action Needed To Tackle Severe Skills Shortages
Nine leading construction bodies have joined together to call for united action between industry and government to address skills pinch-points such as the dearth of supervisors, operatives and quantity surveyors.
The organisations – Association for Consultancy & Engineering, Build UK, Civil Engineering Contractors Association, Construction Plant-hire Association, Construction Products Association, Federation of Master Builders, Highways Term Maintenance Association, National Federation of Builders and the Chartered Institute of Building – want to see the industry work together to accelerate recruitment for 18 severe shortage roles in industry.
These roles are:
· Acoustic Engineers
· Ceiling Fixers
· Chartered Surveyors
· Civil Engineers
· Construction & building trades supervisors
· Construction Project Managers
· Design engineers
· Dry Liners General Labourers
· Mechanical & Electrical Engineers
· Plant And Machine Operatives
· Production Managers And Directors
· Quantity Surveyors
· Structural Engineers
The roles have been identified through research from across the members of each organisation and the wider industry as those that are hardest to recruit for. They are vital to the delivery of projects nationwide.
The trade bodies recommend that, wherever possible, steps should be taken to recruit for these roles within the UK, bringing in new workers or upskilling the existing workforce. Where this is not possible, it is proposed that the Government add the roles to its Shortage Occupation list as part of its current review of migration as the UK leaves the EU. Additions to the Shortage Occupation list would allow these roles to be prioritised in future migration from the rest of the world, helping industry to fill these essential roles.
Discussing these recommendations, Suzannah Nichol MBE, chief executive at Build UK said: “Construction projects across the UK are being held back by a shortage of suitable skills. This survey provides vital evidence of the specific roles which must now be considered by the Government for inclusion on the Shortage Occupation list ensuring that we can keep Britain building.”