A training body for the construction industry has warned of a skills shortage in Scotland over the next few years.
According to the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB), the lack of an experienced and skilled workforce in the industry could further damage a sector already reeling from the economic downturn.
In recent years, a reduction in the number of contracts and the late payment of invoices has seen major changes. Many companies have gone to the wall in this time, while others have had to significantly downsize.
Many have taken steps to address the situation though, often through invoice factoring. Helping release cashflow, such steps have minimised the impact of fewer contracts and outstanding invoices.
However, citing data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS), the body has said a skills crisis is inevitable.
According to the ONS, nearly a fifth (19%) of construction workers are set to retire in the next decade. Compounding the issue, the data also shows a quarter are looking to retire within 10 – 20 years.
The board has urgently called for the industry to act sooner rather than later.
Highlighting how a similar crisis tore through the sector at the start of the 90s, the director for CITB Scotland, Graeme Ogilvy, said:
“Not taking action now to encourage young people to join the industry – and investing in the training to up-skill our existing workforce – is no longer an option.”
Ogilvy continued to say that the industry was essential to the economic health of Scotland.