Covid-19: CITB chief exec update - 7 October 2020


Good afternoon,

Supporting training through the recovery, retaining skilled workers and attracting new recruits is CITB's focus in the coming months.

This week is UK Construction Week (5-9 October) and you can find out more below about how to get involved with this year's online-only events. There are also updates on CITB's Go Construct and Future Made initiatives to attract and inform more people about the industry, helping them join. There is also an invitation to become a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Construction Ambassador.

UK Construction Week

It's UK Construction Week and an important time to promote construction careers. There's lots of new information and content available on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter as well as the Go Construct blog.

As you can imagine, creativity has had to come into play and many events usually planned for this time of year and around UK Construction Week have been cancelled or taken online. We're supporting virtual careers fairs, such as Scotland's Biggest Parents' Events, with the latest information and virtual work experience opportunities across the three nations.

Careers remain one of our three priorities – this includes attracting people to join our industry now and in the future as well as retaining skills and talent.

Pre-Covid, we were going to launch significant campaigns to attract people to our great industry. The impact of the pandemic changed this focus to:

An immediate need to retain the skills we have and then to help with upskilling

Make sure people are aware of the range of career opportunities on offer

Promote the value of a diverse workforce, both for businesses and for people already in the sector, as well as to those that might be thinking of joining

Attract people who want to be part of our sector, and have the skills and behaviours we need, providing easy routes for them to join.

In addition to the Talent Retention Scheme, we're enabling site and work experience opportunities to help people secure the right employment, and along with creating routes into work from Further Education, we continue to develop services to inform, change perceptions and help people access training and jobs.

Go Construct: improved info and more visitors

We're currently working with construction employers and the Department for Work and Pensions to develop a range of site tour videos to be added to Go Construct, helping showcase the industry to a wider range of potential recruits.

The Go Construct website has recently been improved, resulting in double the number of visitors coming via Google. In the past year there have been more than 545,000 visitors, with 24% of these in the 18-24 age group. More than half of these are then clicking onto national apprenticeships websites and related job boards afterwards. We will continue to build on these links to help people join the industry.

There's also been a 208% increase in visits to the pages which explain what's involved in different construction jobs.

The transfer of our Go Construct Ambassadors to the STEM Ambassadors scheme is also under way. This provides schools and colleges with a simple way to request a Construction Ambassador engagement and for us as a sector to provide a consistent and positive image to the recruits of the future. To date we have 1,193 Construction Ambassadors, from 523 employers. We are providing classroom activities as well as training materials for Ambassadors to share their knowledge and experience with different audiences.

If you want to become a registered employer, or know of any great role models, why not encourage them to sign up to become a STEM Construction Ambassador?

Move for Future Made role models

At the beginning of the year we promoted Future Made, a campaign to change perceptions and attract more young people into construction. The construction professionals who became our Future Made role models will come together with Go Construct and the new STEM Construction Ambassador scheme.

While we won't be running the campaign as previously planned, we will be using the material we have created so far, which has been seen by more than 2.1million 14-18 year-olds on social media. This shows the impact role models can have on educating those outside the industry as well as showcasing career opportunities for those already working in it.

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.

Finally, I would like to wish you, your colleagues and families a safe and pleasant week ahead.

Kind wishes

Sarah Beale
Chief Executive