From education to employment

NOCN and WorldSkills UK launch report on improving productivity in UK Construction

NOCN and WorldSkills UK will launch the ‘Constructing SMARTER’ report, part of the WorldSkills UK ‘Seeing is Believing’ Programme, at ‘WorldSkills UK LIVE’;  the largest UK experiential careers, skills and apprenticeship event, being held at the NEC Birmingham on 21-23 November 2019.

The report is the result of research carried out by NOCN in the Summer of 2019 to understand the current position of the UK construction sector, what can be learnt from competitor countries, and how the UK can find a way forward by ‘Constructing SMARTER’.  

Participation in the WorldSkills UK ‘Seeing is Believing’ programme provided international insights from the WorldSkills ‘Skills Olympics’ competition in Kazan, Russia, in August 2019, from observing international competitions and meeting with employers and skills organisations from around the world to share knowledge and understanding on construction practices and skills from different nations.

Mark Buckton, Director of Job Cards & Construction Services at NOCN, explains:

“This new report documents our learnings on global best practice in construction and sets out recommendations for employers, government and training providers on how we increase productivity in the UK construction industry through improved skills development.”

The report’s key findings identified that construction is facing similar issues across the globe when it comes to productivity:

  • Skills shortages
  • Challenges of the digital revolution
  • Barriers to recruitment, and
  • Levels of literacy and numeracy

However, the UK falls behind in areas where the most productive construction sectors around the world excel, including:

  • The perception of careers in construction
  • The structure of the workforce (the most successful nations have a higher proportion of directly employed workers which makes training and upskilling easier); and
  • The adoption of highly productive construction techniques.  

A range of recommendations are designed to create more of a sense of ownership and involvement from UK employers and other key stakeholders, and drive forward the widespread implementation of key industry innovations.

The study team for the report included:

  • Graham Hasting-Evans, Group Managing Director at NOCN;
  • Mark Buckton, Director of Job Cards & Construction Services at NOCN;
  • Braden Connolly, Director of Products and Services at the Construction Industry Training Body (CITB); and
  • Harkesh Ram, Curriculum Manager, Advanced Building Technologies, at Dudley College of Technology.

Graham Hasting Evans will officially launch the report during his presentation at WorldSkills UK LIVE.

Related Articles