As government reports of cases of Covid-19 show rises to levels similar to what they were at the beginning of the pandemic, Chancellor Rishi Sunak has been forced to think again on his assurance that furlough will not be extended further than October 31st. Whilst this scheme is still set to finish on this date, he has instead extended the Job Support Scheme to help pay salaries for companies that are forced to close. 

 

‘Britain risks an unemployment crisis greater than we have seen in decades…’’

Annalise Dodds, Labour Shadow chancellor

 

Case levels are rising and local lockdowns are being implemented, and many businesses are expected to close again in order to counter the curb. Employees and companies, who have already been through alot over the last six months, are currently left in a furlough limbo. Many are questioning the levels of support they are receiving, leading to searching questions for those who may need to reskill to find future employment. 

In this latest development, trying to answer the question of what to do next is increasingly impossible for many. Fresh restrictions mean another decline back into full lockdown and a raft of redundancies for businesses who haven’t had the time or notice to prepare. Who could blame anyone for looking for another way out? A new career is the only option for many. One of our tutors, Jimmy Adkins, had some advice for those facing job losses,

 

"Anybody who's lost their job... my advice is don't be afraid. With hard work and the right training... you can do anything that you want."

Jimmy Adkins, Access Training Academies Tutor speaking on ITV Tonight

 

With jobs in jeopardy, what individuals need are alternative options: a flexible route into one of the few stable careers still viable and accessible in this climate. At Access Training we are seeing many people making the move into getting a trade - we’ve been continually training people ever since the pandemic began, and for 17 years previously - we never closed, and have given people the impetus for fresh starts, new careers, trade qualifications, and most importantly, a brighter future. These things could be awaiting you, if you decide to train and fill the often advertised skills gap in the trades.

Whatever your course of choice – whether it’s a plumbing course, a carpentry course, an electrical course, or any course within construction – Access Training can provide a route out of a seemingly unending series of reports about redundancies and job uncertainties. The construction industry is seeing an unprecedented upturn in demand, and people are needed to fill that demand. Enquire about starting a course with us today.


Learn your trade. Get qualified. Make it happen.

In a couple of weeks, the furlough scheme is coming to an end and economists are predicting that what began as a safety net for millions of people, will still result in mass redundancies. But there are reports that construction businesses are expanding due to demand which is great news for those changing careers and getting a trade. 

Rewind back to the beginning of lockdown, a time when furlough seemed, to millions of people, like a blessed relief. It kept thousands of people afloat, supported businesses through a tough time, and made sure that the brutality of the pandemic wasn’t made worse by a crushing economic crash. 

But now, six months on, the end of the furlough scheme is rapidly approaching. Predictions are coming through surrounding the impact of the next six months. And it isn’t looking good. 

It's clear that the situation we’re in as a country is going to be very problematic for many. So we have compiled 5 important points about the current predicament, highlighted so that you have the information you need to make a decision about your future:

 

  • 1.8 million people are predicted to lose their jobs when furlough ends. Estimates now predict a massive surge in unemployment that could reach 12%.
  • 20% of people who received furlough are facing unemployment. According to the Office for Budget Responsibility, 8.9 million people benefited from the furlough scheme. 

 

  • The Office for National Statistics reports that between 7-20th of September, only 11% of workers were signed up to the furlough scheme. This is down from 36% in April.

 

  • The Bank of England reported that it is likely that businesses have been exiting the furlough scheme quicker than we think. They suggest that only 7% of workers are still receiving furlough in September. 
  • The Times reports that, due to ‘weaker demand and uncertainty about the outlook’ ahead, businesses are ‘slashing jobs and investment’. Many workers will not be able to protect themselves from the economic downturn. 

 

However, there is a shining light coming from the construction and trades sector

 

Powered Now has reported the fastest rise in construction output since 2015. This great news was based on information coming from the UK Construction PMI (Purchasing Managers Index).






The report also noted that UK construction companies had rapidly expanded their business activities during the summer as new business had increased in spite of the wider economic issues. Powered Now also made comment on Yahoo Finance regarding the welcomed upturn:

 

‘....the building sector is back! This is great news. It means that this important sector is doing its part in the recovery from Covid-19. The whole industry is still in catch up mode and projects delayed by the lockdown are taking priority. This has helped to spike demand and we expect it to continue…’



So the trades may well be the place to be for a new stable career! Maybe it's time to consider a new direction: Invest in yourself, invest in a new career, and invest in a trade.



Learn your trade. Get qualified. Make it happen.

‘Sunak explained that he saw no point in supplying further funding to maintain jobs that would be no longer sustainable...The chancellor appears to be hoping that employers will make the altruistic choice. Some will, but many will not’. – Will Clayton, employment analyst at Constantine Law.

 

In the aftermath of Rishi Sunak’s Job Support Scheme (JSS) announcement, thousands across the country have been contemplating what the new arrangement means for them – for their jobs, livelihoods, and futures. With the furlough scheme coming to an end on October 31st, it is as yet unclear who will benefit or miss out from the introduction of the JSS. How will it work in practice? Will employers follow the rules if they don’t have to? Are we about to see a spike in redundancies?

Here are five things you need to know about the upcoming changes due to take place – after all, it’s your career that’s at stake, and it’s essential that you have all the necessary information available to you, in order to make a decision about your future:

 

1. ‘Unsustainable’ and ‘unviable’ jobs are bearing the brunt

In the government’s layout of the plans ahead, they note that only ‘viable’ jobs are being supported. The definition of what is a ‘viable’ job is shrouded in ambiguity – the question is, what jobs count as un-viable? Surely every job is viable if it earns you a living?

 

‘It is fundamentally wrong to hold people in jobs that only exist inside the furlough’ – Chancellor Rishi Sunak.

 

2. JSS supports only those who are still in work

Here the scheme really emerges as a ‘watered-down’ furlough scheme. Those who are self-employed, or working in industries that haven’t been supported by the furlough scheme are, essentially, still unsupported, still struggling, still living without the certainties they deserve.

 

 

3. One third of pay will still be cut from overall wage

And even those workers who are still working in the ‘viable’ jobs with reduced hours – they’ll still have to admit a loss of a third of their wage. The new arrangement ensures that the employer and the government will each cover two thirds of the usual salary – the missing third will have to be taken on the chin. In a time of such financial uncertainty and job instability, where people have faced a 20% reduction in salary already through the furlough scheme, another third reduction is going to hit some people particularly hard.

 

‘It leaves many hundreds of thousands of workers...with a grim future’ – Julian Knight, Chairman of the Commons Culture Committee.

 

4. It costs employers more

As well-meaning as Sunak’s deal is, it takes employers’ generosity for granted. For example, imagine an employer had a workforce of fifteen, all on a third of their usual hours, yet still having to pay two-third of their usual wage for unworked hours. Why not just sack off ten of the workers, and pay the remaining five their normal full-time wage? It would save money and a headache – it’s actually cheaper just to sack the worker and pay someone else to work part-time!

 

‘We can’t continue to provide the same degree of support as we did at the beginning of this crisis and sustain it at that level … it’s not affordable’ – Chancellor Rishi Sunak

 

5. It doesn’t solve the overall problem

It doesn’t take an expert to observe that the new measures are another temporary fix. It doesn’t remove the inevitable cliff edge – we’re still heading towards it, it’s just been placed a bit further down the line.  Meanwhile, hard-working people, who have faced months of stress and uncertainty, are faced with more of the same, as what exists of the safety net gets thinner and thinner. And the reality is, if you haven’t been able to work during the lockdown months, then you simply won’t benefit from the upcoming changes.

 

6. Confusion is still rife surrounding the scheme’s practicality

It’s just another case of waiting and seeing what happens on October 31st – another leap into the unknown. Appropriate timing for Halloween? Perhaps so, as it marks the beginning of another six months period of continued degradation; another few months of watching the ship slowly sinking, and only a rubber dinghy there to save you.

 

But the future doesn’t have to be as terrifying as all this. If you’re prepared to take one leap into the unknown, in the form of this next phase of job support, then we’re here to suggest another, far more secure and rewarding leap: into a new career.

The construction industry is faring well, all things considered, under the new system – better than most sectors in the UK. Why not learn a trade and invest in your future? If you’re out of work and facing the horrendous prospect of the future outlined above, it sounds like you have nothing to lose.

 

Learn your trade. Get qualified. Make it happen.

 

 

How long is a plumbing course?

Traditionally, learning and becoming qualified in a trade like plumbing takes years of college, followed by another few years of training and apprenticeships. Here at Access Training, we aim to get you qualified in a much shorter time frame.

There are lots of different avenues one can go down when looking to become a qualified plumber, so we're here to answer some of the most frequently-asked questions about what it takes to become qualified, and what you can expect on your journey.

 

How Much Does It Cost to Become a Plumber?

A plumbing course can cost anywhere between £495 and £4,995 depending on the course content. There are a wide variety of courses available that differ greatly in the content they cover – some just cover the basics you need to know, while others delve into greater detail or specialise in particular aspects of the plumbing trade. Choosing the right course is vital when you're training to become a plumber.

 

How Long Does It Take to Become a Qualified Plumber?

Generally, it will take you 1 to 2 years to gain all the plumbing qualifications you need if you are undertaking a NVQ Diploma Level 2. An apprenticeship will typically take anywhere between 2 and 5 years.

 

How Much Do Plumbers Earn?

Plumbers in the UK generally earn between £750 and £1000 per week, which breaks down to £150 - £200 per day of work. Plumber's wages can increase where demand is greater and higher rates of pay can frequently be achieved, so becoming a plumber is an excellent choice of career.

 

Access Training's Plumbing Courses

Here at Access Training, we offer three different plumbing course packages. We understand that every student is different, looking to get qualified with different levels of previous study and experience, and with different end goals for the end of their course. For those reasons, we've carefully tailored a number of different courses so that every student can find something perfectly suited to fit their needs.

We also offer part-time plumbing courses because we understand that not everyone has the time to dedicate to study full time. If you need some flexibility as you study, our part-time courses are perfect since they allow you to complete the course at your own speed.

If you're looking to start your career as a plumber for the first time and you're after a course that's suitable for entry-level students, there are three different courses available:

If you're a qualified plumber looking to further your career and get qualified in in a new, more specialised trade or skill, we offer the following courses:

Still not sure which course is right for you? Questions not answered here? Contact the Access Training team today and our course advisors will do their best to give you the information you need.

Plumbing Courses   Contact Access Training

Learn your trade. Get qualified. Make it happen.

“Output has increased for two months in a row and momentum is increasing. June’s 23.5% surge was triple the 7.6% growth seen in May… The recovery is still young and fragile, but so far it is taking the hoped-for V-shape.”

Gareth Belsham, Naismiths. Construction Enquirer, June 2020


The wider economic outlook is grim for the UK, that's been extensively reported. The OECD has forecast that the UK’s national income will slump by 11.5 per cent this year, greater than that of France, Italy, Spain and Germany. Brexit will also have an impact on the economy, but that’s another potential issue.

However in spite of all the negative predictions, the trades sector has much potential as it represents the spearhead by which government investment generates growth. These measures will seek to boost the economy in a manner not seen since the end of the Second World War.



“History shows the construction industry is the tried and tested means of driving economic recovery, just as it did after the Second World War”

Paul Gandy, managing director of Interserve Construction, Construction News 3rd July 2020



An article in Construction News in July of this year, written by Paul Gandy, managing director of Interserve Construction, highlighted the positives that could then filter down through all areas of the industry. He highlighted that jobs would be secured and created across manufacturing, architecture, planning, engineering, distribution and construction, plus many other indirectly related jobs.

He also goes on to state that the construction industry as a whole provides people with new jobs quickly and the money that is invested gives a speedy return. With the government now looking to prioritise their spending they could do no better than to provide people with a level of funding needed to create these new skilled jobs in the trades.



“If the government prioritises job creation, skills and infrastructure spending – as the prime minister has pledged – the industry could be well placed to bounce back quickly following an extremely challenging period.”

 

Paul Gandy also made it clear how valuable the sector is to the UK economy as a whole: 

 

“In 2018, the economic output of the construction sector, according to the Construction Leadership Council (CLC), was worth £413bn, equivalent to 8.6 per cent of GDP. This is nearly four times the combined annual output of the aerospace and automotive industries.”



The construction sector itself is huge with over 900,000 sole traders amongst the 3,000,000 people who are directly or indirectly working in the industry - There are also just under 1,000,000 people that are regarded as self-employed.

There is still a long way to go to ensure that these prospects are fulfilled and we have some way to go before we reach a full and sustained recovery. Demand for construction projects will continue to increase, although nobody knows exactly when this will happen, as Ragene Raithata, a senior associate in the construction and infrastructure practice at DWF Group, importantly reminds us: 



“In a post-pandemic world there will still be a requirement for more homes, urban regeneration, improved infrastructure, improved offices, retail space and more distribution facilities. We all know from past downturns that a robust construction sector will emerge but how and when, we just do not know.”



Homes will always need building, infrastructure will always need developing, modernising, adapting – and we will need it now more than ever before. When things do return to normal, Britain needs the workforce to contribute to its road to recovery, to fulfill its prophecy of re-growth. We need to create our own masterplan for revival to see us out the other end – but most importantly, we need skilled tradespeople who are able to get the job done.

It is no overstatement to predict that the construction industry will provide the means of rebuilding our country: physically, economically, and mentally. And who knows? The next decade might see the UK economy becoming dependent on the continued growth of the construction industry. 

Whatever happens, we’ll need skilled tradespeople to get the job done – and you could be one of them.

Enquire for a course today



Learn your trade. Get qualified. Make it happen.

Get in touch to learn more about our training courses!

First Name *
Surname *
Telephone Number *
E-mail address *
Ask A Question *
 
Security Character Security Character Security Character Security Character Security Character Security Character
Enter Letters (No Spaces) *