Raising the Roof on a Career in Roofing
The construction industry is traditionally a male dominated one, especially the roofing sector of the industry and if we want to address the severe skills shortages these sectors are facing then it’s time to think outside the box in order to attract more youngsters into a career in roofing. An analysis carried out recently by a leading construction and rail consultancy revealed that the skills shortage can only be tackled adequately by employers taking a pro-active approach and going above and beyond the call of duty. Right now estimates suggest that a massive 27,000 projects will suffer from a lack of suitably skilled and qualified workers over the coming five years so today we’re going to take a look at some recommendations that we need to take on board in order to improve the situation.
Improving gender diversity is a key issue. At present, we are effectively ruling out half of the workforce from working in our industry. No other mainstream industry suffers from such a colossal lack of diversity in this way and this is a major contributing factor when it comes to the skills shortage. The #GirlsAllowed programme was launched specifically to deal with the issue of making the industry more inclusive and both construction companies and roofing companies are being encouraged to take part.
Improving the Image
Promoting a better image of the industry to the public at large is vital if we’re to attract more young people and school leavers into our workforce. Not many people outside the industry are aware of the potential that a career in roofing or construction holds. The main stereotype perceived about our sector is that the work means being cold and muddy and working outdoors doing physical work. This needs to change as there are plenty of careers in construction and roofing which are radically different to this perception. The skills of quantity surveyors, for instance, are similar to those of an accountant. However, rather than spending all your time behind a desk, there are opportunities to work on major infrastructure and construction projects but not enough people outside the industry are aware of this.
We need to widen the talent pipelines into construction by reaching out to young people and school leavers, many of whom would currently not seek a career in construction or roofing. Roofing and construction companies need to take a pro-active approach, getting out into colleges and schools to speak to youngsters about the potential benefits of a career in construction. It’s also vital to make young people aware that the4re are so many different types of jobs in the construction and roofing sectors and that not all of these involve hard physical work. The increase in the use of drone technology, for example, means that roof inspections are now using cool new technology that the kids are already totally familiar with. BIM modelling is another digital technology vital to construction which represents a thoroughly modern approach to this traditional industry.
It’s only by showing young people the diverse career options available within both the roofing and construction sectors that we will ensure that there are enough workers to keep UK industry at the cutting edge after Brexit.