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Long-Term Planning Needed to Plug UK’s Construction Skills Gap

Amidst concerns about national infrastructure projects grinding to a halt, the Chief Data Officer at the Building Cost Information Service (BCIS) delves into the dire need to address the skills gap in the UK construction industry. The Department for Leveling Up, Housing & Communities published a policy paper in November 2023 titled’ Revitalizing Britain’s Construction Sector: Accelerating Infrastructure Delivery. 


When they compared the number of large infrastructure projects that passed through the NSIP system between 2016 and 2019, there’s been a staggering 40% surge after 2020, as one of the paper’s key findings reveals. However, these large-scale infrastructure projects are not progressing at the pace necessary to tackle the challenges they are up against. 


The time it takes to deliver projects is excessive. The need for a system that makes swift and consistent decisions instills confidence in developers and investors and rewards successful delivery is a direct consequence of the volume of projects in progress. Unfortunately, the system’s performance in these areas is currently inadequate.


Worries about “projects taking too long” are still prevalent in June 2024. The statistics make this a common problem. Despite a number of reasons other than the pandemic at play, the UK construction workforce in 1Q2024 was 90% of what it was in 4Q2019. Eventually, a reduction in the workforce drives higher labor expenses and wages.


1Q2024 saw the greatest annual inflation rate in over 20 years, 8.3%, in the BCIS Labour Cost Index. An overall 7% annual increase was seen in 1Q2024, according to the Hays/BCIS Site Wage Cost Indices, which monitor changes in the agency labor market. Prominently, increases were observed in skilled occupations relative to the preceding quarter.


Also, you can read How Employees Become “Unsackable” Amid an Impending Recession


Subdued market demand, partly because of extended high borrowing costs, is juxtaposed with present shortages and growing expenses. Concurrently with the recovery of the overall economy, building output has been declining recently. The scarcity of workers will worsen with rising demand, and the UK has not even come close to reaching the levels required to meet the targeted housing requirements or complete the infrastructural enhancements.


The upcoming administration must prioritize facilitating construction expansion. To meet the growing demand, a long-term plan for workforce development is crucial, one that remains unaffected by political cycles. Given the complex nature of the issue, substantial investments in future workforce training and a strategic, long-term approach to new projects are imperative.


The UK’s construction industry faces a critical skills shortage that demands long-term planning and strategic investment in workforce development. Addressing this gap is essential for the successful completion of infrastructure projects and the overall growth of the economy.


At Dynamic Staffing Services, we are committed to bridging this skills gap by providing comprehensive recruitment solutions. Our expertise in sourcing skilled professionals globally ensures that the UK construction industry can access the talent it needs. Let us help you build a stronger, more skilled workforce for the future. Contact us today at +44-7477196844 or email enquiry@dss-hr.co.uk to learn more about our services and how we can help you. 


Visit our Website:  Dynamic Staffing Services.

About the author

Headquartered in Dubai, with offices in 13 countries spread across UK, Europe, Middle East and South Asia, Dynamic Staffing Services is an industry leader within its niche space of international recruitment. Over the last 45 years, DSS has successfully places over 450 000 candidates in the engineering, healthcare, hospitality, IT and manufacturing sector. Please visit us as www.dss-hr.com to learn more about us. We pride ourselves in being an ethical recruitment services provider following the most stringiest regulations towards code of conduct. We recruit talent from Eastern Europe, India, Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia, Africa, Egypt, Bhutan, Nepal, Bangladesh, Malaysia among other nationalities and place them into 24+ countries. Each year we give jobs to about 12 000 candidates.

A part of the 1500+ people strong Dynamic group, our sister company Dynamic World Education Community focuses on Study Abroad, by helping students find the right education (www.dynamicwec.net), Dynamic immigration focuses on providing immigration services (https://www.dss-hr.com/canada) to families wanting to move to Canada & Altudo focuses on software development and enhancing digital customer experiences (https://www.altudo.co )

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