Plugging the skills gap


As an active Construction Equipment Association member, Junaid Makda of Nylacast views the construction equipment industry skills gap not as a problem, but as an opportunity…

The phrase “skills gap” often has negative connotations across many industries. There is no doubt it exists and is an operational problem, however, it’s encouraging to see and witness the positivity and passionate flair in which the issue is being addressed on a national and international scale.

It is evident to see this through the number of companies within the construction equipment industry alone which are actively investing, introducing and implementing numerous academies, training programmes and skills initiatives. This provides faith that the skills gap will soon be shortened and less likely to re-occur if the levels of commitment to skills and training continue.

We believe that where possible, companies should act as a platform for education and opportunities for a wide range of students and youngsters, whether they are looking to gain experience and insight into sales, marketing, engineering, research & development, quality or logistics – the list of interest areas is endless.

It is also important for construction companies to maintain strong relationships with local, national and international educational institutes, and regularly holding events and activities helps to engage students. Activities can include work experience and placements through to gap year placements and Knowledge Transfer Partnerships (KTPs), student open days and site visits through to careers fairs and lunch & learn sessions. Local schools, colleges and universities should also be regularly visited by company staff and current apprentices, in order to give their first hand view and insight into apprenticeships and engineering.

People are our most important asset and continuously investing in them is key. Tailor-made structured courses in management and leadership, and business improvement techniques result in employees gaining qualifications which can then be topped up to lead to university degrees – something which is dearly appreciated by those employees who did not choose the educational path at younger ages and went directly into work from leaving school.

A student day at Plantworx is very well fitted, having exhibited and participated in many exhibitions and events worldwide we often find the student days are well received. The time spent speaking and interacting with students helps to pave the foundation for the engineers of tomorrow which may well be our future customers.

This year’s CEA Plantworx Construction Machinery Exhibition will be held at Bruntingthorpe Aerodrome, Leicestershire 2nd-4th June. For more info and free entry tickets to the event visit .

There are many companies within the construction equipment industry all bringing value to different areas. By highlighting what they do and the benefit they provide, whether it’s a small washer or a large piece of equipment, there’s always a story to be told and ears to listen. You don’t have to build a rocket and send it to the moon to encourage apprentices, you just have to invest the time and resources to communicate with them effectively.

Junaid Makda

Marketing Manager

Nylacast and Construction Equipment Association member

Tel: +44 (0)20 8253 4502


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