11 June 2018
By Diana McHugh
Supporting Tomorrow’s Workforce
On Tuesday, May 22nd KLHer Diana McHugh volunteered with the Construction Youth Trust at the University Academy of Engineering South Bank. The Construction Youth Trust is a charity that helps youth to build better, skilled futures by giving them access to training, education and employment opportunities in the construction industry.
Recent studies show an aging population in the construction industry with a lack of new skilled workers entering the UK construction industry. In 2015, construction consultant Mark Farmer calculated that the industry needed 700,000 new workers simply to replace those retiring or moving industries and a further 120,000 to deliver capacity growth in the sector. The Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) has predicted that a lack of skilled workers could impact 27,000 construction projects each year until 2019. Furthermore, experts are concerned the industry faces a “ticking time bomb” with Brexit-related uncertainties on the horizon.
With the impending skill shortage, it is imperative for leaders in the UK construction industry to support programmes that encourage young people to explore the sector, provide fundamental skill development and training.
Encouraging people into the construction industry through offering apprenticeships is one way companies can help close the skills gap and ease the pressure on the industry’s existing workforce. At UAE South Bank, Diana participated in a mock interview scenario to help the graduating students prepare for upcoming apprenticeship opportunities. The goal of this activity was to offer students interview practice and more importantly, to provide them with constructive feedback on their interview style, so they are as prepared as possible for their first interviews in the construction industry. Diana met many incredibly bright and talented students, including a very driven student, Lexi, who is interested in becoming a mechanical engineer. This volunteering opportunity was not only beneficial for the students, but valuable for KLH to meet and support the future of the construction industry.
The Construction Youth Trust is an organisation that can facilitate meaningful encounters with industry experts to build cross-industry partnerships with schools, colleges and universities. It aims to challenge stereotypes, champion careers and support students to achieve their career ambitions. KLH believes in supporting tomorrow’s talented young workforce and will continue to support CYT, we would encourage our readers to do the same!