A recent survey conducted by Retail Company Screw fix, shows that two out of five tradespeople were giving more quotes for work than a year ago, and more than half of the trades people who took part in the survey said that their business was better than the previous year, in particular, plumbers, electricians and carpenters are extremely optimistic about their business outlook during 2016.

In 2015, the skilled trade industry experienced an increase in demand towards the end of the year, fortunately this trend has continued into 2016, with one in seven tradespeople stating that they have too much work on their books.Most of the tradespeople surveyed said that they expected business to remain at the same level, or improve over the next 12 months.

If you are a regular reader of our blog posts, you will notice that we write about the current skills shortage crisis that we are currently experiencing in the UK regularly. The skills shortage is a huge issue that we are currently facing. Currently in the construction industry alone there is a shortage of 35,000 people, this figure naturally increases when domestic tradespeople are added into the equation.

With the increase in demand, it is apparent that – even though good for plumbers, electricians, gas engineers and carpenters, because it means that there is no shortage of work, potential customers will soon start to run into difficulties being able to find a trades person when they need them the most.

If these projections are correct, then 2016 could mean that many tradespeople may start having to work long hours to keep up with the demand. This means that now is the perfect time for people who are thinking about learning or retraining as a skilled trades person or adding taking courses to develop their existing skill set.

Here at Access Training, we have developed alongside City & Guilds, and other awarding bodies, a wide range of fully comprehensive courses that are suitable for people who have no prior industry experience. Our courses will teach you the very basics, through to the more advanced techniques used by trade professionals. 

To find out more about our plumbing, carpentry or electrical courses, contact us today!


According to the latest figures, the UK's construction workforce has shrunk by 12.9% since 2008. This is particularly strange due to the abundance of work currently available to contractors, which would suggest that the industry in busier than ever, with workers often having to turn down work because they already have an existing contract or promise of work with another employer. In spite of the surge in demand, however, the amount of workers in the industry fell dramatically last year, with 16,000 less people in the profession between 2014 and 2015.

Industry experts have put this dramatic fall in numbers down to a shirking talent pool, with people previously trained in the profession either retiring, in work, or having moved to other industries during a low period of work after the recession in 2009. Since the recovery in 2012 and 2013, those who remained in the profession managed to regain regular employment straight away, but they were not joined by a high number of new or returning workers. This means that firms can no longer rely on a once-abundant pool of talent to recruit from, which prevents them from expanding and in turn, presents a barrier for overall industry growth.

What the construction industry now needs is an surge of new talent from young people entering the industry, as well as those from a non-construction background who have decided to change their career. Before expansion and increased job security is possible, there must be enough skilled tradespeople to meet the demands of the industry, and to ensure a high calibre work force. At Access Training, we've helped countless individuals to gain the skills so desperately needed in the industry, allowing them to access a new and fruitful career path. From total beginners to ex service men and women, we have helped a diverse pool of candidates to reach their full potential and begin a successful career in construction.

Some of the courses we offer include:
and more!

Explore the rest of our site to see our full range of courses and lay the foundations for your future, as well that of the UK construction industry. For more information about our courses, get in touch with us today!


It has been reported that unemployment in the UK has been steadily decreasing over the last few years, but looking closely at the numbers, in the UK there is currently around 1.71 million people who are unemployed, get the skilled trades industry needs at least 35,000 entrants to stand still.

With enough unemployed people to help close the trade skills gap - why are people not considering a career as an electrician, plumber, or gas engineer? We believe that there is a distinct lack of information provided by schools about the qualifications needed and the career opportunities available for young people within skilled trade industries.

Mark Beard, chief executive of regional contractor Beard, believes that “only a few young people see construction as a viable, well paid or exciting industry to work in because careers information at school is generally inadequate and out-dated”

The industry must also build better relationships with careers advisor's and teachers, said Beard, as well as ensuring that they have high-quality information and materials that provide accurate and informed advice.

He added: “By stepping into the classroom and sharing insights about apprenticeships, work placements and our own career paths, we can help young people make informed choices. We can also advise them on the skill-sets and qualifications they’ll need to succeed in the digital construction world of the future.”

In general we agree with the point raised by Mark Beard. If construction companies and trade industry experts took the time to deliver career talks or engaging educational days to children, we could motivate more people to aspire to become a plumber or an electrician.

Firstly, It is important that we work to dispel the myths about trade jobs. Many people still see trades jobs and low paid, unimportant, and physically demanding jobs which are more suited to men than women, which is simply not the case. By dispelling these myths from a young age, we may find that more women aspire to become a trades-woman.   We need to start communicating to young people that learning a skilled trade is an important, exciting job, and there will always be plenty of well-paid, work available.

Secondly, we believe there is a lack of assistance for school leavers who wish to embark on a trade career instead of going to university. In many schools, the focus for many students is to carry on their education through 6th form or college and onto university. As we know, university doesn't appeal to everyone, and the pressure to go to university that some school apply on their students, may leave many people feeling alienated and questioning what careers paths they can embark on instead of going onto further education. To help educate students about careers in trade, industry experts should be working closely with schools and colleges. Helping to open the discussion about trade jobs and providing up to date information on the qualifications needed to become a skilled trades person will help educate and inspire people from a young age.

UK companies need to become more engaged with the younger generation, and need to inform children about the importance to skilled trades, and the need for individuals with a specialist skill set and the type of career they can have. For many students, not having an extortionate amount of debt over their heads upon completion of their education could be very appealing!


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(Image via bradleypjohnson on Flickr)

The UK’s media channels are often rife with horror stories of cowboy tradespeople. People watching programmes like “cowboy builders from hell” on channel 5 or “watchdog” on BBC1 will certainly develop a negative image of the trades men and women in the UK. In fact a staggering 60% of people said that it is fair to label tradespeople as “cowboys” or “rogue traders” and 20% of people said that they’re afraid of being ripped off when they need work done.

Follow these simple steps to avoid being labelled as a rogue trader:

Build relationships with your clients: Take care of little jobs free of charge. This will help increase customer loyalty. When someone is happy with your work, they are more likely to recommend you to their friends. A survey conducted by imperial finance revealed that 37% of people feel that having a relationship with their trades person is important, and 14% of people were referred to their trades person by a friend or family member.

Clean up after yourself: This might seem obvious but it is often overlooked by tradespeople. If you are working on a leaking sink and you spill water on the floor – make sure you mop it up. If you have had to take things out of cupboards to access pipework, make sure you put it all back before you leave.

Make yourself as easy to contact as possible: leave people with a copy of your flyer, business card, or a fridge magnet with your telephone number clearly printed on them, remember to take the visually impaired into consideration. Make sure that you always have your mobile switched on, if you can’t take the call, make sure you call them back at your earliest convenience.

Keep in contact with your clients: after you have completed the work, call the client back, ask them if they are happy with the work – or if they have ran into any complications. 55% customers leave because they have had no contact from you and are indifferent. After Job Service is often more important than the job itself, this is where you can really start to build relationships with your clients and go above and beyond your call of duty.  Loyal customers spend on average 33% more than people who are non-loyal and can refer up to 107% more customers than non-loyal customers.

Make it easy for people to get references:  set up social media sites, and encourage people to review your business online – this is effective because people buy from people if someone has a something bad to say about your business then people are less likely to hire you to do the work. Make sure you leave them with nothing bad to say! Set up a website to showcase your qualifications, and show people that you really are an expert in your field. This will give people confidence in your ability as a trades person.

Make sure you are fully trained for the job: again it might seem like an obvious point, but if you are not correctly trained for the work don’t take it on. Leaving the work half way through or doing a bad job can damage your reputation.

You can’t start a career as a skilled trades person until you have received expert training. No matter what career you are considering Access Training can help. We offer courses for beginners looking to learn a new trade through to more experienced tradespeople who are looking to expand their service offering.

To find out more about the courses we offer at our state-of-the-art training centres you can contact us by calling (Freephone) 0800 345 7492 or by filling out the enquiry form here.


Much of Britain went back to work yesterday, and a lot of people were unhappy about it. Of course, it's always sad to say goodbye to the indulgences of the festive period, but if the thought of returning to work had you feeling miserable before you'd even finished your New Year Prosecco then it may be time to swap your current job for something new. After all, sitting at a desk isn't the only way to earn a living!

If you'd like to retrain and start a new career in the trade industry, we at Access Training can help. We offer a huge variety of training courses for people of all skill levels - here are a few examples:
There's never been a better time to enrol on an Access Training course. We are currently having a New Year Sale, with up to 50% off ALL courses; whether you want to become an electrician, join the Gas Safe Register, or pick up some plumbing qualifications, this is your opportunity to save a packet as you work towards your goal.

But time is running out! Our New Year Sale will only last until the end of this week, and more course dates are filling up every day. To guarantee the best price on your preferred training course, please call 0800 345 7492 now or click here to learn more. We look forward to hearing from you!

UPDATE: Due to the unprecedented popularity of this offer, we are extending our New Year Sale by one more day! The sale will now end on Saturday the 9th of January - contact us now now to book your course!

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