As we pursue the positive news coming from the housebuilding sector, we look at what’s being done to develop the housebuilders of tomorrow. From NVQs and apprenticeships, to other learning schemes, hard work is being done to plug the skills gap in the construction industry. Here’s how…
Changing attitudes The UK Construction industry has suffered from a skills shortage for several years now, with a few reasons contributing to the lack of talent available. An ageing population of experienced construction professionals coupled with a younger generation lacking interest in the sector is one such factor. It begs the question, what is it about construction which turns young people off? There has been a pretty negative view of construction over the last decade or more. From perceptions such as, ‘it’s a man’s world’, to thinking it involved a large amount of manual labour. There hasn’t been sufficient enough information about construction, and all you can do with a career in construction, passed on to the young. There needs to be more done to support schools and colleges in highlighting the many benefits a career in construction can bring, for all genders. For example, there are the commercial sides of construction, the planning, and administration; and apprentices can go on to be leading figures in the industry. The opportunities are considerable.
Recognition of demand The industry is fully aware of the importance of the next generation of construction workers. Not only to sustain a healthy sector but also to bring fresh ideas to grow it for the better. For example, today’s construction projects involve researching more sustainable methods of construction work, and how we can implement renewable technology. There’s so much for young minds to get their teeth into! And with this awareness comes a string of training programmes and apprenticeships for those looking to build a career post-education. These cover a cross-section of specialisms within construction, offering something for everyone.
NHBC NVQ Training Programme It was good news to read recently that the National House Building Council (NHBC) has passed the 5,000-candidate milestone for its NVQ training programme. This comes some twenty years after they first stared taking on apprentices. And what’s great about their construction NVQs is that they are recognised as a benchmark qualification to prove occupational competence. Some of their NVQs are the equivalent of a bachelor’s degree and can lead to more career-defining opportunities through membership of the Chartered Institute of Builders (CIOB) and the Chartered Association of Building Engineers (CABE), for example. So, what do the courses involve? The NHBC’s NVQs have evolved to cover key housebuilding areas and are mostly centerd around construction site management. There are technical courses, for example construction contracting operations, which cover estimating, buying, planning, surveying, and site technical support. There are also supervisory and management courses.
NHBC Remote Learning To maintain the flow of new candidates through their NVQ programmes, the NHBC’s training teams have been working remotely to process new candidate instructions. The Industry Training Manager at NHBC, Geoff Mann confirmed in a statement that since the first lockdown back in March last year, over 250 candidates have been inducted onto the NVQ courses. The team have had to adapt and evolve how they deliver the NVQs, with assessment submissions also being processed remotely. With the courses tailored to each individual candidate’s job role and construction specialisms, they are delivered by trainers with a combined experience spanning over hundreds of years. The perfect foundation for a career in construction! Are you a housing developer looking to connect with qualified homebuyers searching for new build homes? We can help. List your properties for sale with us, and you will reach a highly engaged, ready to buy, new build homebuyer audience. Find out more.