In latest Covid-19 developments, Wales is preparing itself for a 2-week ‘Firebreaker lockdown’, which takes the entire country back to the restrictive conditions it saw in March. Similarly, Manchester and other large towns across England are on the verge of being made into ‘Tier 3’ restricted zones. The UK is seeing significant and dangerous rises in the number of Covid-19 cases. But as ever, we’re asking the same questions – what does that mean for workers and businesses in the construction industry?
As the country prepares itself for another potential large-scale lockdown, we’re here to sing the praises of the ‘fireproof’ construction industry, which, despite all the odds, is thriving and surviving through this turbulent period. Furlough and lockdowns will likely be things of the future, for months and potentially years to come. Retraining in construction early could be your ticket out of purgatorial furlough schemes, stationary jobs, and a sinking job-support ship. Read on to find out five reasons why we think retraining in construction is a no-brainer.
- All construction work is set to continue despite lockdown
Although minor repair and maintenance work in private homes is banned in Wales, all other commercial and infrastructural building work is set to continue. Build UK has recently issued a template letter for all construction workers to carry around with them, in case they are mistakenly stopped by police enforcing the lockdown. This letter will have details of the worker, company they work for, and site they are working on – for any workers currently in the construction industry, you can download your own here: https://www.constructionnews.co.uk/health-and-safety/wales-lockdown-workers-issued-letter-of-proof-as-construction-continues-20-10-2020/
In short, construction workers are now treated as essential workers – and rightly so!
This will be a massive reassurance to those working in construction, as it ensures that major projects will go ahead, freeing up a long backlog of projects yet to go ahead. Even better, construction work of all kinds is continuing as planned in England, Scotland, Northern Ireland, and Ireland too.
‘A sharp output rebound of 13.5% for the whole construction sector is forecast in 2021’ – David Rice, Construction News (October 20th, 2020)
- Productivity and demand are at an industry record high
A recent forecast has shown that construction industry output has been affected less than first fears indicated. The Construction Products Association predicted an initial 20.6% reduction in output, but this has been lowered to 14.6% – a significant decrease. The industry is one of the few whose performance is actually looking set to improve as time moves on, and is proving to be the safest and most stable place to work at the moment – and, indeed, for a long time to come.
- Construction made a quick recovery post-lockdown
The speed with which the construction industry got back on its feet is very promising, but it’s all down to one important fact: construction is essential, and tradespeople will always be in high demand. This is exactly what was seen in July and August of 2020, when the demand for construction work, after seeing a backlog of months, skyrocketed. Sites opened quickly after the lockdown, and workers adapted well to the new restrictions. They got their heads down, and did the job – a testament to hard work, determination, and a passion for the trade.
- Building sites have adapted well to Covid-19 restrictions
When lockdown measures were first relaxed in July and August, allowing construction work to recommence, there were great concerns that social distancing measures would inhibit the productivity of a building site, making work inefficient, slow, and expensive. But this has not been the case – on the contrary, social distancing has hardly affected large-scale, infrastructural building sites at all. The trades have been allowed to continue largely unscathed, in relation to many other sectors across the country.
- The lockdown won’t stop you from becoming a tradesperson
What the last six months have seen is that the appetite for changing career and retraining as a tradesperson has never been more ravenous. Thousands of people have approached us, from a range of different backgrounds, to seek our services and reskill themselves in whatever aspect or aspects of construction they wish. Taxi drivers, chefs, pilots, entertainers, solicitors – you name it.
The development of our online portal means that, wherever you are, in whichever ‘Tier’ or whatever state of lockdown, you can begin a course right from the comfort of your own home. Over lockdown, literally thousands of people have benefited from this flexibility, and with more lockdowns potentially looming, we don’t want you to miss out this time.
With the uncertainty ahead which clearly isn’t going away anytime soon, we hope you can see that the decision to retrain really is a ‘no-brainer’. If you think you have what it takes – the practical skills, the determination, and willingness to work for what you want – then Access Training can get you into lucrative, satisfying, and above all important work, in no time at all.
Learn your trade. Get qualified. Make it happen.