Construction firms are already feeling the impact of Brexit according to research from the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB).
The organisation’s latest Green Paper explores migration in the UK construction and built environment sector and worryingly, one in three construction employers have felt the impact of Britain’s decision to leave the EU – up 9% from the migration research undertaken last year.
Of greater concern, the research has shown that while these companies have felt the effects of staff shortages and fewer clients because of the uncertainty created, less than a third have actually started to take necessary action; in some cases, construction firms haven’t even planned to do so.
With the clock ticking down on the negotiating time remaining, it is imperative for construction firms that plans are put in place to help address the uncertainty that the industry has long since admitted to feeling.
According to the research, which canvassed a mixture of employers, recruitment agencies and migrant workers, only 8% of employers who have now started making Brexit contingency plans will actually increase training; the main aim seems to be to keep hold of all current employees as we move ever closer to Brexit.
Elsewhere, research reveals that almost half of those canvassed believe recruiting skilled workers will become much more difficult in the next two years, with only 4% expecting the situation to get easier.
Steve Radley, Policy Director at CITB, believes a “twin-track strategy” is required that will help the industry recruit domestically, and from abroad.
He said: “This Green Paper highlights the need for a twin-track strategy – investing in the domestic workforce while enabling employers to continue to secure the vital talent of migrant workers.
“With an estimated 158,000 construction jobs to be created between now and 2022, it is critical that industry works together to deliver its part of this strategy.”