Construction pipeline tests skills pool

Delegates gathered at the first Greater Manchester Construction Summit at The Point on Friday to debate the industry's skills needs and pipeline of work.

All delegates received the latest copy of the Construction Pipeline Analysis, produced by Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce, which updates the forecast for the skills needs of the construction sector in the city region, based upon the pipeline of planned work.

Christian Spence, head of business intelligence at Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce said: "Our Pipeline Analysis answers a fundamental need which the Greater Manchester construction sector has wanted for some years: an accurate understanding of the future labour needs for the work which is coming down the line. Following the findings of the first edition, we are already delivering some the much-needed the skills for trades – where it didn't previously exist within GM – in order to ensure that the work which is planned, can be built, on time and budget."

This second version of this report delivers the following key findings:

  • The planning system for Greater Manchester currently contains £9.5bn of construction output to be delivered between 2014 and 2017 inclusive
  • These projects include £7.6bn of new project starts between 2014 and 2017
  • Output in 2014-2017 is being driven by housing (£3.2bn) and private commercial (£3bn)
  • An additional £3.8bn of project value has entered the planning system since our previous report, of which £2.2bn of value is scheduled for 2014-2017
  • Labour demand peaks at 65,475 workers on site in March 2015 and 65,564 in August 2016 with a median average of 55,742 per year over the 2014-2017 period
  • An average of 2,788 training places are required each year in the 2014-2017 period, an increase of 75% on the 2010-2013 period
  • There are key skills shortages in building envelope, steel erection, glaziers and civil engineering
  • There is a lack of on-site competency-based qualifications to meet demand
  • There is an oversupply of degree-level qualification for architects and surveyors
  • There is an oversupply of NVQ-qualified plasterers, bricklayers and scaffolders

Since its publication the first edition has been uniformly praised by the construction industry, training providers and the UK government as a welcome innovation which can help them all better understand the skills needs within the construction sector. Building on this success, and working in partnership with Barbour ABI exclusive providers of New Orders in the Construction Industry data to the Office for National Statistics the second edition updates the data presented in the first edition and support the greater understanding of the construction sector.

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