In this episode of the Construction Talk Podcast, Peter Haddock talks with Alasdair Reisner, CEO of the Civil Engineering Contractors Association, to talk about the future of the construction industry, digitalisation, and attracting new talent
The Construction Talk Podcast kicks off with Alasdair Reisner, who talks about the importance of the Construction Leadership Council (CLC) in creating a consistent and collaborative approach in the industry.
As a collective, the construction industry is desperate for people to join the sector, and reskilling current people within the industry and making it an attractive place to be is important. Reisner states: “The construction industry has never been able to work collectively. The CLC was the first chance that the sector had to face the problem and work together.”
How can the industry be made more attractive?
Reisner states that one major way the industry can become a more attractive sector is by focusing on making the application process as streamlined as possible, alongside offsite approaches, future skills, and diversity.
As Peter Haddock comments, ‘[in the past, the construction sector] has not been very good at diversity and inclusion, and creating pathways for people who come from different backgrounds’.
Reisner adds: “We need to put out more positive role models in the industry and present a different industry image. We need ambassadors to look and feel like the people that they’re talking to”.
If a person looks and feels like the people that they’re trying to encourage into the industry, it is more inviting and successful as a whole.
Digital transformation in the construction industry
Haddock and Reisner also discuss the future of digital technology in the construction industry, and what this means for future skills.
Haddock states: “As we are in the midst of an increasingly digital world, we need to adopt more digital approaches to construction.
“This digital approach really plays into the strengths of young people, who are ‘natives’ of the digital world. “
Reisner adds: “The world we’re going into, we’re still going to have concrete, we’re still going to have steel, that’s not going to go away, but the way that we’re going to use these materials is going to change with digitalisation. Therefore, anyone with a digital skill will definitely see a future in this industry.”
What support is there for businesses wanting to attract new talent?
Haddock and Reisner also discuss what support is available to businesses who are looking to recruit new people into the industry, from government schemes, reskilling initiatives and funding support.
Reisner also notes the importance of organizations such as the CLC and CITB, which have information and training resources available for businesses that need them.
Listen to the full episode of the Construction Talk Podcast here.