Construction Leadership Council – study into labour markets & off-site

This blog was written by BSRIA Chief Executive Julia Evans

This blog was written by BSRIA Chief Executive Julia Evans

Exciting times: leading on from BSRIA’s press statement issued on 3rd February: the Construction Leadership Council (CLC) has been asked to undertake a “major” labour market study by skills minister Nick Boles MP and housing minister Brandon Lewis MP.

BSRIA is encouraging member and industry input from to the accompanying CLC consultationconstruction industry labour model study

Evidence to: construction.enquiries@bis.gsi.gov.uk

Deadline: Monday 29th February 2016.

The CLC has invited Mark Farmer of Cast Consultancy (formerly Arcadis) to lead the study, culminating in a report for CLC’s consideration in the spring. It will both: reflect on the impact of the current “labour model” in construction and make recommendations for action by the industry and government to help overcome constraints on skills development and the sector’s capacity to deliver new homes and infrastructure.

In particular, ministers want to know whether there are structural issues and risks that diminish long-term incentives for smaller subcontractors, who employ the largest part of the sectors workforce, to invest in training.

As I said earlier this month: BSRIA is very much supportive of this commission and consultation and, on behalf of the industry and our members, wishes to be involved every step of the way. Such commission hasn’t come a day too late, especially with rising demand especially, but not only, in the house building sector.

Alternative delivery methods – such as off-site – with a fresh skills base and capacity to bring new entrants to home building supply chains signifies a “shifting focus”.

 The consultation requests:

  • Evidence of how the construction labour model and recruitment practices impact on incentives for skills development in the sector (including in the supply chain) and on the introduction of more novel techniques such as off-site construction.

Evidence on how the current model works – including:

  • What business models and other arrangements could better support skills and skills pipelines in the sector?
  • What measures could improve wider incentives for capacity investment and the introduction of new ways of working?
  • What are the barriers and enablers to greater use of off-site construction?
  • How could the range of participants in the UK housing market be broadened, including through the better introduction of institutional funds?

So, I urge “one and all” to take a few minutes to put “comment to keyboard” for this crucial study. Remember: little can change without your expert opinions!

Being a Young Engineer

This blog was written by Laura Nolan, Sustainability Engineer at Cudd Bentley Consulting

This blog was written by Laura Nolan, Sustainability Engineer at Cudd Bentley Consulting

What is it like to be a young Engineer?

I think it’s fair to say the term Engineer in itself is very broad so for the purpose of this blog my focus is my discipline, Building Services Engineering.

So how did I become an Engineer? Through my love of maths and problem solving, I chose to study a common entry Engineering Degree in Dublin Institute of Technology. Following the first year of Maths, Applied Maths, Physics and Chemistry, I then chose the Building Services route as it seemed the most interesting to me and it was. It offered modules in a wide range of subjects from lighting design, fire engineering to smoke control and acoustics. As well as the heating, cooling and ventilation design as you would expect.

I graduated in 2010 from Dublin Institute of Technology to a bleak construction industry in Ireland so I looked elsewhere and succeeded in getting a job here at Cudd Bentley in Ascot. Since graduating and entering the workplace as a Consultant Engineer, no two days have been the same, each week offers new challenges and the range of projects I have been involved in has been exciting. Projects I have been involved in range from retail to residential, shopping centres to extensive refurbishment projects. I work as part of a team and although I am mainly office based, I regularly visit site to carry out inspections or for Design Team meetings, offering an enjoyable diversity to my job.

Quite quickly into my career I realised my interest in the area of Sustainable Engineering Design and with the support of my company, Cudd Bentley Consulting, I have completed a range of courses including CIBSE Low Carbon Energy Assessor, Elmhurst On Construction Domestic Assessor and Bentley Hevacomp modelling course to allow me to be proficient in thermal modelling and a Low Carbon Consultant. I really enjoy building modelling and have had the opportunity to work with some interesting models here at Cudd Bentley. I use my models to generate a variety of outputs including heat loss and heat gain calculations, energy and carbon saving potential, overheating analysis, Energy Performance Certification and Part L Compliance.

Sustainability is an area that I am particularly interested in and this year I have begun an MSc in Renewable Energy in Reading University. I enjoy learning and I don’t think I will ever be finished learning. Topics which I am particularly interested in currently are Nuclear Energy and the Feed in Tariffs Scheme for solar energy. I think it will be a real shame if the Government chose to drastically reduce the Feed in Tariff Scheme. I am also eager to see what will come from the Climate Change Conference, COP21, in Paris this month.

I have been attending events for the BSRIA Young Engineers Network for the past five years and I was delighted to be asked to be the Chairwoman of the Network this year. I would encourage all young Engineers to attend as it gives a unique opportunity to meet experts in their field, discuss current topics with your peers and to network with fellow young Engineers.

I was fortunate to be surrounded by highly experienced Engineers from the beginning of my career and one piece of advice I would offer every young Engineer is to immerse yourself in the knowledge of those people around you with such experience as well as making sure to put your own young and fresh approach to it where appropriate. The industry is constantly changing and it’s important to be constantly evolving.

Being a young Engineer is challenging, exciting and for me a fantastic career.

Construction Industry Summit announces its two day programme

CIS_Logo_New_DatesThe Construction Industry Summit: Government and Industry Working Together is a major two day event in the 2015 construction industry calendar taking place in London on 8-9 September at Grange, St Paul’s Hotel, in Central London.

Organised by the industry, for the industry, this flagship conference and network event, led by the Construction Industry Council (CIC), the Strategic Forum for Construction (SfC) and the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB), will engage and empower stakeholders from across all sectors of the built environment to achieve and deliver the Construction 2025 vision.  Leading professionals from across all sectors will come together to share best practice, challenge conventional thinking and learn from one another. Over two days the Summit focus will be on two main themes – GROWTH and PEOPLE.

Day One – Tuesday, 8 September

Following introductory addresses by eminent government and industry speakers, day one will look at the key drivers of growth to 2025; the growth opportunities and risks that lie ahead; Government as a Client and; how innovation will help us to achieve growth. Presentations will be delivered by notable industry leaders and academics in their fields, with panels of experts providing a broad range of perspectives. Speakers include Dr Peter Hansford, Chief Construction Adviser; Rain Newton-Smith, Director of Economics at CBI; Mike Putnam, President and CEO, Skanska UK; Madani Sow, CEO & Chairman, Bouygues UK.

Day Two – Wednesday, 9 September

This day will be devoted to the people who make up the industry and whose talent and expertise it relies upon to deliver the Construction 2025 vision and its aspirations for the built environment of the future. How will construction compete with other industries to attract a mix of top new recruits? How will it develop their construction skills throughout their careers and retain expertise for the long term?

Keynote speakers include Adrian Belton, Chief Executive Officer of the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB); Jocelyne Underwood, Construction Membership Manager at Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce and; Jo Pottinger, Head of HR Strategy and Development at BAM Construct UK. The day also features viewpoints from new recruits on what it’s like entering the industry today and four women on the frontline of the industry’s diversity challenge show how inclusive strategies will help the industry succeed in a global marketplace, forecast to grow by over 70% by 2025.

The Construction Industry Summit is supported by the Cabinet Office and by the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills. The latest construction policy announcements are expected to be made at the event.

You can find detailed information about the programme on the website as well as information about booking and commercial opportunities:

http://www.constructionindustrysummit.com/ 

 

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