The Construction Industry Training Board – What’s it all About?

December 21 2017 0comment

The Construction Industry Training Board – What’s it all About?

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Here at D-marc we’re committed to providing our readers and customers alike with useful and relevant information about the construction industry and the roofing sector in part5icular.  As such, we take a keen interest in education and training as we’re well aware that these are vital factors in ensuring that end customers receive a great service from the roofing and construction companies that they hire to work on their properties.  Great quality training means great quality workers who will have the necessary skills to inspire confidence in the industry.  Today, we’re going to take a look at the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) which was established in 1964 as a non-departmental public body of the Department for Business Innovation and Skills until it moved to the Department for Education last year. 

When the 1964 Industrial Training Act was amended in 1982, it gave the CITB its mandate to collect a levy from construction employers to be used to support training and skills in construction.  This has resulted in the CITB inspiring a whole generation of construction workers, with the following accomplishments:

  • Four million people carded
  • Tens of thousands of young people being advised on career options
  • 1.3 million workers helped to pass a vocational qualification
  • Half a million apprentices trained
  • £2.3 billion disbursed in grants

With roughly half of the CITB’s income coming from the levy paid by construction employers, the organisation has been subject to a certain level of criticism over its funding of training.  In June of 2016, the CITB was criticised for not supporting the industry charity, Building Lives, while providing grants to organisations to train sales and marketing staff.

Following a review of the CITB in October last year, the need for reform became clear and in November last year, the CITB unveiled a new strategy to become simpler and more streamlined, ending direct training through the National Construction College and moving its facility from Norfolk to Peterborough. These changes are likely to involve substantial job losses among CITB staff as it moves to commission outside training providers rather than providing the training itself. 

During the review of the CITB it was discovered that although construction employers and trade associations have voted for the industry level to continue, there was significant criticism of how the CITB currently operates.  The CITB has said that in future it will use levy money to “ensure a sustainable training and development market” and only intervene to provide a service where it is unavailable on the market or not to the quality level necessary. 

Since the introduction earlier this year of the government’s apprenticeship level, confusion has reigned, with large building firms now having to pay two levies, one to the CITB and one to the government.  This resulted in employers putting pressure on the CITB to cut costs and be more efficient which is why the CITB now seems in a state of flux.  However, the coming year is likely to see these issues resolved as we concentrate on overcoming the construction industry skills shortage. 

We will be keeping an eye on the situation with the CITB in order to let our readers have all the latest news and developments on this subject, so watch this space.

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