Owen Goodhead Comments on Telford Homes plc 2015 final results.
Owen Goodhead, managing director of specialist recruiters Randstad CPE comments:
“Housebuilders are bearing up under a sea of adversity – battling on despite a growing skills shortage. For businesses like Telford, well-worn worries about building enough homes aren’t just theoretical restraints. This industry has always been about competing for contracts, grappling with deadlines and struggling for a profit. Now, battling for the right people can be added to that list.
“Headline numbers demand action on training. Our own research shows that if the United Kingdom is to build enough homes by the end of the decade – a monumental challenge of doubling total output to 300,000 homes per year – then the entire industry will need to recruit a million more construction workers. That means finding hundreds of thousands of bricklayers, carpenters, plumbers and planners. It means filling 30,000 quantity surveyor jobs and finding 28,000 architects. Within these huge totals, there is a day-to-day exertion to fill jobs with skilled people – and housebuilders are struggling.
“Other issues matter too. Planning and materials shortages also cause delays. But the serious question is increasingly ‘who?’ will build enough homes, beyond the often-simpler ‘where’ and ‘when’. For Telford Homes these headwinds may be manageable, but – just as for anyone looking for a home in which to live – there is a danger that a skills shortage could become more of a hurricane than a headwind.”
Further information on research cited here from Randstad CPE’s ‘Age of Housebuilding’ report is available online.