New research has highlighted the growing cost of the building services engineering (BSE) skills shortage to the UK economy. According to surveys and analysis commissioned by Kingfisher, the company that owns Screwfix, B&Q and TradePoint, the lack of skilled tradespeople could cost the UK economy £98 billion by 2030 in missed opportunities for growth.
New research has highlighted the growing cost of the building services engineering (BSE) skills shortage to the UK economy.
According to surveys and analysis commissioned by Kingfisher, the company that owns Screwfix, B&Q and TradePoint, the lack of skilled tradespeople could cost the UK economy £98 billion by 2030 in missed opportunities for growth.
The industry desperately needs new entrants to plug gaps caused by an ageing workforce and experienced workers upskilling to new technologies, such as air source heat pumps (ASHPs). Taking on an apprentice is a great way for employers to nurture the next generation of building services engineers while growing their business in an affordable way.
How many new tradespeople do we need?
The current shortfall of tradespeople stands at 166,000, a number that is predicted to increase by more than 50% over the next 6 years, reaching 250,000 by 2030.
Getting to the root of the skills shortage…
There are many factors that have contributed to the skills shortage over the years, but one key problem is the perception of careers in the trades in schools and colleges. The Kingfisher study paints a picture of a school system where young people are encouraged into academic careers rather than vocational pathways:
- Just 13% of 16–25-year-olds were encouraged to consider a career in the trades at school.
- 47% of young men were given information about the trade careers at school, compared to just 26% of young women.
- 42% would have liked more information about trade roles from school.
Those working in the skilled trades – plumbers, heating and hot water installers and electrical engineers – play a critical role in our economy and society. The focus on academia over the trades needs to be reset, with pathways to trades careers better represented in schools.
Inspire the next generation
Experienced installers have a key role to play in changing the perception of the trades. The study found that tradespeople are highly satisfied with their work, with 87% saying they would recommend a career in the skilled trades to young people. So why not pass on your knowledge and skills through an apprenticeship?
Large businesses already pay for training through the apprenticeship levy, and small businesses pay only 5% of apprenticeship training costs. It’s a win-win scenario – apprentices benefit from real-world experience and the ability to earn while they learn, while employers can strengthen their business through funded training, with wages that rise in line with experience.
Logic4training apprenticeships are coming and we’re looking for employers.
From summer 2024, we will be delivering Gas Engineering apprenticeships and Smart Metering apprenticeships from our Northolt training centre.
Designed industry experts and delivered by ex-engineers who understand the needs of the sector, Logic4training apprenticeships offer a complete solution for employers. State-of-the-art facilities, year-round provision and small class sizes ensure that everyone gets the best out of the experience.
Are you interested in employing an apprentice?
We are looking for employers who are interested in taking on an apprentice.