A construction skills shortage is proving to be a significant problem for the industry. In 2021, the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) released figures on how many new construction workers are needed, and the results are staggering.
In total, the industry must recruit at least 217,000 new workers between 2021 and 2025. Considering the specialist skills needed by construction workers, this might prove to be a challenge, resulting in a further skills shortage in the industry.
So, how could offsite manufacturing help developers tackle these significant skill shortages?
Skills shortages in the UK building industry
Many specialist areas of construction are now reporting skill shortages, including joiners, bricklayers, quantity surveyors, and electricians.
Considering the larger deficit of construction workers in the UK, it will take some time before all sectors have enough workers to cope with the demand–and there’s plenty of that.
With the UK government setting a target to build 300,000 homes a year by the mid-2020s, construction workers will inevitably find themselves with an increased workload in the coming years. The need for skilled, specialist workers has never been greater.
So, what’s the solution to this problem? Well, offsite manufacturing comes with a range of benefits, including the ability to combat the UK’s construction skills shortage.
Most importantly, offsite manufacturing is carried out by a specialist team of manufacturers in a factory. Though each worker on an offsite manufacturing project will be a specialist, it’s actually very easy to train new team members in offsite construction. Consequently, offsite manufacturing is not as affected by skills shortages as other construction projects.
Other benefits of offsite manufacturing
With less time spent on training workers in offsite construction, projects are ready much faster than if they were built onsite. As they are built in a dedicated factory, projects can also be made watertight much faster, reducing any delays in the build process.
As a result, a faster building process brings plenty of benefits, including reduced costs.
Offsite manufacturing is much safer than onsite manufacturing, as it is not as affected by the weather, which may bring safety concerns such as slip risks and reduced visibility. As it takes place in a controlled factory environment, there are also fewer concerns from an untidy site.
As well as being led by a team of specialists, offsite manufacturing projects benefit from far greater resources than an onsite build. Workers can make use of complex machinery and detailed systems not available to onsite projects, speeding up build times and increasing the reliability of projects.