The construction industry will lose a fifth of its workforce to retirement.

    With the construction industry facing its
    biggest skills shortage since 2007, it’s more vital than ever that the industry
    recruits new talent to its ranks. In fact, the Royal Institute of Chartered
    Surveyors (RICS) believes that more than 200,000 skilled workers are needed by
    the mid-2020s.

    It doesn’t help that the industry is also
    suffering from an ageing workforce. Data from the 2011 census showed that one in five employees
    in the construction industry were aged over 55. This means that by 2020 the
    industry will lose a fifth of its workforce to retirement — without enough
    newcomers to replace them.

    The clear solution is to attract young workers
    to close the skills gap and ensure that there’s enough manpower for the
    construction industry to hit its targets.

    However, it’s not that simple.

    Break down preconceptions

    The industry is still seen as undesirable to
    young people, with only 10% showing an interest in a career in construction.
    This study by L&Q Group found that 50% of the young people surveyed were
    interested in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM), yet the
    construction industry was described as “challenging and unexciting”.

    But it doesn’t have to be this way. Below,
    health and safety experts 3B explores what steps can be taken by
    construction companies, and the industry as a whole, to remove the stigma young
    people have with construction and how to attract a new, vibrant workforce.

    1. Pique their interest

    Although manual labour is still a huge aspect
    of construction, there’s a lot more on offer than hard hats and muddy boots.

    Whether it’s drones, 3D printing or augmented
    reality, the construction industry has embraced innovations in tech and can
    offer exciting roles that simply aren’t available in other sectors. As a
    generation that lives and breathes technology, there are plenty of exciting
    opportunities for young people to get involved in.

    The industry has already begun to better
    educate young people on some of the exciting roles in construction. However, it
    needs to start shouting louder about the revolutionary technology and range of
    career opportunities available to attract the future talent it needs.

    2. Perks are key

    Perks were once seen as a retention tool for
    employers as a way to keep their employees sweet.

    Today, though, things are different., A survey
    by Perkbox found that Generation Z (your future
    workforce) value workplace perks more than any other generation. 36% claim that
    it can make a big difference when choosing where to work.