The Influencers Column: Callum Massie
According to the 2017 report ‘Future demand for construction workers’, released by the MBIE, construction investment growth is set to peak in 2020 and increase the requirements for construction-related occupations until at least late 2022. This means employers are facing an increasing skills shortage and having to alter the ways they recruit and retain the best staff.
Businesses within commercial or residential construction now have the opportunity to grow. The issue stopping them is being able to get the right staff members to take on those projects and deliver quality work.
There’s no area where there’s an abundance of staff, from labour to carpenters to subcontractors such as plumbers or electricians, right through to site-based staff like site managers and supervisors, quantity surveyors, project managers and site engineers. Every single area of every project is very difficult to recruit, making it hard for people to fill up their business with top-notch people.
We do look to Australia, which is obviously fairly close by and has a similar way of building, but we do a lot of work with attracting people from South Africa and the UK as well, and we have also sourced candidates from the US.
Retention is probably one of the biggest focuses any [construction] employer has at the moment. People are moving much more frequently than they have done in the past and that’s because it’s so competitive a lot of employers are looking to attract people from other businesses who are already trained in a similar method of construction.