Covid-19: CITB chief exec update - 23 September 2020


Good afternoon,

Today’s email contains a summary of the key aims and initiatives set out in our new Strategic Plan 2021-25; a reminder of the deadline for completing your Levy Return; and details of the Construction Leadership Council’s (CLC) latest People Survey.

Yesterday evening, the Prime Minister advised the nation to return to working from home, where possible. We appreciate that a push in this direction once again, may mean more agility is required from business. We will continue to review and update our supporting materials for the Site Operating Procedures guidance, in line with government direction.

Addressing skills challenges for construction – Strategic Plan 2021-25

We’re sharing our new Strategic Plan 2021-25 with you today, which sets out the key skills challenges for the construction industry and what CITB will do to address them.

We expect COVID-19 to have a lasting impact on skills provision, creating an increased demand to protect specialist skills. We have built in flexibility so that we can respond if requirements change, using our experience and conversations with industry to understand the issues.

Due to reduced income, it will be essential that we focus on a smaller number of priorities to modernise and improve productivity, with greater access to training. We’ll help employers address gaps in provision, make training accessible and target funding where it’s needed, including through the Grants Scheme.

Some of the initiatives within the plan include:

  • Support 28,000 taster experiences of construction and help potential new entrants understand the opportunities available through Go Construct
  • Create a new pathway between Further Education and employment for 8,000 learners, including 1,600 apprenticeship starts
  • Give 19,000 people onsite experience to prepare them to start work in construction
  • £500m of grants and funding (77% of Levy) into direct employer funding - to help employers invest in training to rebuild after the pandemic and subsequently to modernise and boost productivity.

Together, we can build a productive workforce equipped in high quality, transferable, core and emerging skills that will pave the way for recovery. You can read more in our Strategic Plan 2021-25 (PDF, 366KB).

Levy Proposals and the 2020 Levy Return

In an earlier email this month, we informed you of our latest Levy Proposals, which we are proposing should be used in the Levy Assessment to be raised in August 2021. As well as a cut in Levy rates by 50% for all employers, the proposals will also mean that an extra 5,000 small employers will no longer have to pay any CITB Levy. 

These rates will be applied to the information you provide in your 2020 Levy Return (covering 6th April 2019 – 5th April 2020), which you’ll receive for completion at the end of this month. All Levy Registered Employers have a requirement to complete this and submitting your Levy Return by 30 November 2020 allows you to access our 2020/21 Grants Scheme, and ensures that any outstanding grant payments can be made.

If you have any questions on how to complete your Levy Return, please contact us on 0344 994 4455 or email levy.grant@citb.co.uk. You can also complete your return online here

People Survey – Share your views

The results of the first industry-wide People Survey, carried out by the Construction Leadership Council (CLC) in June and reported in Retaining Talent in Construction, helped to secure funding and support for key initiatives. To understand the ongoing impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the construction workforce, the CLC has launched a second People Survey. The information gathered from responses helps us to understand the appropriate action required, identify the right priorities and influence government support for the areas of greatest need.

Please complete the online survey which should take no longer than 10 minutes by Friday 2 October. The information provided will be confidential with no company details required.

A reminder… 

CITB’s COVID-19 Urgent Messages page is refreshed daily and includes updates on the full range of our work. You can also read the range of support measures made available to UK businesses and employees by the UK Government.  

I would like to wish you, your colleagues and family a safe and productive week ahead.

Kind wishes,  

Sarah Beale
Chief Executive