The skills crisis and how the construction industry can overcome this

One of the most reported issues within the construction industry right now is the skills crisis.

With the ageing workforce and the demand for construction workers consistently rising, it is estimated by 2027, up to 250,000 extra workers will be needed in the industry.

Plus, training is a priority, especially as we continue in a more digital and green-conscious environment.

One way that can lessen the skills gap is promoting more diversity and inclusivity in the industry. At this time, only 15% of the workforce is made up of women, and only 6% of workers are from ethnic minority backgrounds.

These are figures we would love to see increase, so for that to happen, recommendations include to create a cycle that promotes continual and sustainable upskilling and creating a more flexible work environment, especially as this has proven successful across industries since the pandemic.

Also education from a younger age is vital, to move away from the image that all construction jobs are for men and are manual. An example of a system that has promoted this is in Sweden, where they have created Q&A podcasts on skills and apprenticeship schemes, open site days and creating informative video content for social media.

Another suggestion is to make greater investment in technology, such as artificial intelligence. This could help with automating processes, developing driverless plants and overall accelerate more modern methods of construction. 

The government has recognised the ongoing skills crisis, and so to make employing foreign workers easier, they have created a Shortage Occupation List, where it is easier to sponsor these workers. Construction and building trades were featured on the list.

Which of these ideas do you think will be most effective in addressing the skills crisis? Are there any more you would add? Let us know, and make sure you follow TRIQS Consulting on social media for more industry updates.