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    What Construction Industry Challenges are there to face in 2021?

    Over the past 18 months the UK is not only dealing with the pandemic but also the adjustment to Brexit. With both issues seeming to come at once the learning curve has been very steep across all industries, including the construction industry.

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    The construction industry is being hit from all angles at the moment, and was one of the few that was permitted to continue working throughout the lockdown periods. It has now come to a time were we need to continue to find a way to live as Covid looks to be around for a while yet.

    The construction supply chain

    There has been an increase of housing projects throughout the last 18 months, with many people extending their homes, doing home renovation projects, it has come to light that materials which would normally take between 3 weeks to 3 months is now taking twice as long to be delivered.

    A recent article in the Guardian has highlighted problems within the construction industry being hit with increased prices for materials due to shortages in the supply chain.

    Many construction companies are seeing a shortage in materials including timber, wheelbarrows, insulation and adhesive due to Covid and Brexit.

    Construction workers

    Not only is there a shortage of materials and a rise in costs, but there has also been a rise in hiring. Construction companies are frantically trying to fill the staff gap. Costs for construction workers is also on the rise. Staffing has been affected because of staff moving away from the cities and overseas workers availabilities and their ‘Right to Work’ status with the new Brexit rules, all of these issues are compounding an industry that was already dealing with an industry skills shortage previous to either Covid and Brexit.

    Construction staffing has been an ongoing problem, addressing the aging workforce, now with workers demand of increasing pay, and projects now taking longer than expected it has become a minefield for companies to address.

    Net zero by 2050

    The energy efficiency debate continues in the construction market. Many industry leaders are calling for more government assistance in funding the net zero promise. The carbon emissions for the construction industry accounts for 45% in the UK, so they play a huge part of the overall net zero target.

    The implementation of ERP software will help minimise waste as project managers can order stock when it is needed to the correct amount required. Reducing on site vehicles and machinery will contribute to the reduction of the carbon emissions. However, there is still a long way to go to see results around the environmental impact.  The best way to achieve these targets will require a complete overhaul of infrastructure along with the right skills and personnel.

    These are just a few challenges facing the industry at this current time, no doubt certain areas will get better and new challenges will arise, but over the years we have always seen the construction industry adapt to changes and find a way to manage the task at hand.

    The effect of Covid and Brexit, just seemed to happen all at once, but as time goes learnings are made and adjustments will be accounted for.

    If you are struggling with staffing requirements contact our construction recruitment team to help ease the burden. Contact us on 0203 008 5212 or email contracts@cavendishprofessionals.com

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