Whilst the construction industry may be struggling, certain skills are now needed more than ever.
According to data released by the National Office of Statistics, construction output fell 13.1 per cent in September from a year ago. This figure means that construction output in the UK is now at its lowest point in 13 years. ONS figures showed that the estimated volume of all new work fell by 2.2 per cent, while repair and maintenance fell by 3.2 per cent in the third quarter compared with the second quarter of this year.
However it is not all bad news for those in the construction sector.
David Edwards, chief executive of the Engineering Construction Industry Training Board (ECITB) has stated that in order to keep up with demand, the industry needs to recruit 60,000 more skilled workers over the next ten years.
Speaking at the WorldSkills event in Birmingham, the expert commented that the industry expects to see a 30 per cent increase in the next decade and more people need to get into the sector in order to satisfy this demand.
“The career opportunities in this industry are numerous. There are currently some 100,000 UK workers in the engineering construction industry in more than 170 different roles, some with practical skills such as steel erecting, pipefitting and welding and others, which are more technician-based, such as instrumentation and control maintenance and design and draughting. There are good career prospects for all these roles and salaries compare very favourably with other industries,” commented Mr Edwards.
The engineering construction industry plays an essential role in the UK economy through the design, construction and maintenance of much of the industrial processing and energy production facilities. The industry currently generates £16 billion annual turnover and accounts for 1.5 per cent of the UK’s GDP.
“It is vital to the future of engineering construction in this country that we raise awareness of the industry with young people,” added Mr Edwards.