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Farmer Review: Government urges industry to encourage new entrants

A photograph of Parliament. The government has given its reaction to the Farmer Review

The UK government has given its reaction to the Farmer Review

THE government is urging the industry to ‘step up’ to the challenges set out by the Farmer Review, Construction News reported last week (see story here).

As part of its response to the Farmer Review, the government is stressing the importance of encouraging new entrants. This is something SCS Group firmly agrees with and is actively encouraging young people to join the construction industry.

Nine months after Mike Farmer’s Modernise or Die was first published, the department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has given its official response to the recommendations outlined in the report.

Many Farmer Review recommendations backed

Construction News reported that though the government backed many of Farmer’s recommendations, agreeing that the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) needed to be reformed and showing its support for the adoption of BIM, it rejected the tenth recommendation of introducing a charge on industry clients to fund modernisation.

Farmer had suggested that introducing such a charge would ‘further influence commissioning behaviour’ and ‘supplement funding for skills and innovation’.

While the government agreed that clients were essential to improving the sector’s productivity and resolving the issues of underinvestment in skills and innovation, the BEIS said that the introduction of a charge could ‘risk damaging developer confidence’ and ‘increasing costs’.

Though the government turned down Farmer’s proposal to solve the construction skills crisis, it has none-the-less acknowledged the issue, stressing the importance of encouraging new entrants.

SCS promotes opportunities for women and young people

A picture of Faye Young, Regional Manager at SCS Group, during the Budding Brunels event

Faye Young, Regional Manager at SCS Group, during the Budding Brunels event

It’s no secret that the construction industry is rarely presented to women as a carrier choice, particularly as it is stereotypically thought to be made up of groups of men in hard-hats and hi-vis vests.

Here at SCS, however, we’re dedicated to changing the face of construction and promoting the great opportunities it presents to both men and women.

Faye Young, SCS Group’s Regional Manager for London and South East, has made it her mission to attract more women into construction and show young people that it’s a fantastic industry filled with opportunities. She believes that encouraging young girls to pursue a variety of careers in construction could help solve the skills shortage crisis. Read Faye’s recent article about this topic here.

Eager to engage with young people at an early stage in their career decision-making process, Faye and SCS Group’s Managing Director Allan Meek have been promoting the industry in schools. They recently attended Budding Brunels, a British Land-funded engagement programme which gives students an insight into the industry through a range of activities.

Serving as experts, both Allan and Faye offered their help and advice. They hoped to fuel these students’ ambition to pursue a career in construction. Following on from this event, two participants in the Budding Brunels programme, will soon be carrying out work experience placements at SCS Group to learn more about the construction industry.