The chief executive of one of Britain’s top house builders is warning that the industry must do more to prevent an existing “crippling shortage of skills” becoming worse because of Brexit.
John Tutte, chief executive of Redrow, says the key concern for the housing industry once Article 50 is triggered to start EU exit negotiations is to avoid anything that leads to further skill shortages.
“A drive for more homes must come hand-in-hand with a drive to recruit more workers, so the government must implement measures not only to retain the international talent already attracted to the UK, but to further support the sector to train and upskill the existing UK labour force” warns Tutte.
“The industry itself has a major role to play and it’s essential that housebuilders work together to highlight the benefits of a career in construction and the variety of pathways that exist” he adds.
Redrow currently has 15 per cent of its workforce as are trainees on structured programmes, and Tutte says he wants this figure to be a norm - not an exception - in the construction sector.
“From brick layers, to quantity surveyors, to architects and decorators – in 2017 inspiring and supporting people into these careers will need to be one of the industry’s biggest focus areas” he says.