NEWS / ACE News / “A great platform for our industry"

ACE News

08 JUL 2020


Stakeholders and businesses welcome new jobs and skills service

Industry reacted positively to the announcement of the Construction Talent Retention Scheme by the Chancellor, today.

The new online portal, supported by the Department for Business, Enterprise and Industrial Strategy and the Construction Leadership Council , will give candidates a platform to showcase their skills and expertise to a wide audience of industry recruiters, while giving companies access to the talent they need as to proactively respond to the challenge of building Britain back better after COVID-19.

Both industry groups and businesses have responded positively to the announcement of the free portal which is expected to launch later this month.

To find out more, download the attached flyer now, or register your interest on the website

David Barwell, who as Chief Executive of AECOM in the UK & Ireland also chairs of the ACE’s Large Consultancy forum said: “The importance of retaining talent within the construction sector has never been greater.  In addition to the moral duty we have to develop the industry leaders of tomorrow, there is also a very clear business driver for nurturing the skills needed to lead the UK through a more sustainable, digitally led economic recovery. AECOM fully supports the CLC Talent Retention Scheme and looks forward to working within the collaborative framework it provides.”

Sarah Beale, CITB Chief Executive, said: “It’s crucial to retain the talent and skills we have in construction, so Government investment in the CLC’s Talent Retention Scheme is very good news. The platform will play a vital role in recovery, as we overcome challenges presented by Covid-19. We look forward to supporting the scheme’s delivery, to ensure both employers and displaced workers can take advantage of the platform.”

Diane Bourne, managing director with Eric Wright Civil Engineering said: “As a major employer in the North West, we are delighted to support this scheme. COVID-19 has had a major impact with long lasting effects on the construction sector and now, more than ever, it will be imperative that we work together to retain our best talent whilst protecting skills and experience across the sector.”

Caroline Gumble, CEO of the Chartered Institute of Building, said: “The CIOB is delighted that BEIS is backing a Talent Retention Scheme for our sector. We have been facing the prospect of a skills shortage in the industry for some time. This has the potential to be exacerbated by the impact from coronavirus with a possible loss of existing skills and talent from the sector, which could be devastating. To see this targeted support delivered for an industry which is an important driver of the economy is excellent. I’m also heartened to see another example of the sector successfully collaborating, right across the industry, to bring something like this to life. Collaboration is also a key component in the drive to see the sector move into recovery as we come out of lockdown.”

Steven Hale, director of Crofton Consulting, an award winning SME firm of consulting engineers, and chair of the Association for Consultancy and Engineering’s (ACE) SME Forum said: “The CLC’s Construction Talent Retention Scheme provides a fantastic platform to place our underutilised resources with partner firms, avoiding the potential exodus of skills from the industry which has been so damaging in past downturns, while helping society meet the dual challenges of levelling up and net zero. We are delighted to support the scheme.”

Simon Innes, managing director of Goodson Associates, ACE board representative for SMEs, and former chair of ACE Scotland, said: “This initiative will be welcomed by all SMEs, as well as companies based in the devolved nations and English regions as it will enable them to access a UK-wide pool of skills, talent and expertise, enhancing their capability to deliver the strong and diverse construction industry that will be needed to create the social and economic infrastructure the UK needs. We are delighted to support this initiative.”

Mark Naysmith is chief executive of WSP in the UK, a leading engineering professional services consultancy and a major employer in the sector with over 8,200 staff. He is also chair of ACE skills group, and said: “The CLC’s Construction Talent Retention Scheme will provide a great platform for our business and everyone in the industry to find the skills, talent and experience that we’ll need as we help Britain to build back better. We’re delighted to support the scheme and will be adding opportunities as soon as is possible.”

John Newcomb, CEO of the Builders Merchants Federation, said: “ Covid-19 has already had an impact and we are seeing businesses having to reduce their workforce.  People are our most important asset and we need to keep the skills built up over many years within the industry in order to secure construction’s long term recovery.

“The Construction Talent Retention Scheme will enable us to retain our talent base and redeploy their skills across the entire sector. We will be promoting the online portal extensively within the building materials sector and encouraging BMF merchant and supplier members to register their interest so they are fully up to speed when the portal goes live.

“This exciting new initiative, championed by the Construction Leadership Council and supported by every major trade and business association within the supply chain, extends across the entire industry, bringing significant scope and scale to its successful delivery."

Suzannah Nichol is chief executive of Build UK and said: “Retaining the people that make up the construction industry, and their skills that we have all invested in, is crucial if we are to help drive the wider economic recovery and deliver the Government’s ambition to ‘Build Build Build’. The CLC’s Construction Talent Retention Scheme is a very practical and effective way of holding on to our most valuable resource, and I would encourage every company in the supply chain to support and use it once launched.”

Leo Quinn, chief executive of Balfour Beatty and founder of the 5% club: “Following the Government’s “New Deal” plan, the infrastructure and construction industry – responsible for 7% of GDP – will be an engine for the UK’s economic recovery, driving long-term job creation and exportable skills. It is vital that we do not retreat from our responsibility to young people, who will be critical in ensuring this country’s future ability to compete globally.

“Employers must maintain their commitment to training and developing the next generation. They must work closely with organisations such as The 5% Club and continue to collaborate with Government to identify sector-specific solutions, like the CLC’s Construction Talent Retention Scheme, to help the UK bounce back from the impacts of COVID-19”.

Paul Reilly, ACE chair for 2020 and managing director, infrastructure & buildings, Stantec UK, said: “One of our great defining characteristics as an industry is our investment in people – hiring apprentices, training for masters degrees and beyond, as well as developing new design skills throughout careers. This scheme will help us to retain critical skills in our industry as we support our clients and pursue economic recovery.”

Anna Scothern, Chief Executive of the National Home Improvement Council said: "The National Home Improvement Council (NHIC) welcomes todays announcement from the Chancellor confirming support for the Construction Talent Retention Scheme.  It is a crucial tool for keeping skills within the sector and will make a huge difference to construction workers and their families that have been affected by redundancies or job losses due to the Coronavirus pandemic.  The Talent Retention Scheme has the full backing and support of those working in the RMI and Home Improvement Sector”

Nick Taylor, Chief Executive of Waterman Group, an engineering and environmental consultant to the property and infrastructure markets which employs 1,200 in the UK said: “The proposed CLC Construction Talent Retention Scheme provides the opportunity to harness the energy and experience of workers within the industry as companies flex their workforce to suit the demands of their clients. Hopefully, as one door closes another one will open, and this will make it possible to retain talent for the future benefit of the construction sector.”

Graham Watts, chief executive of the Construction Industry Council (CIC), said: "The inevitable fall in construction output caused by the covid-19 crisis would be a drain on our talent and the #ConstructionTRS will be the plug to stop the loss of so many talented people."

The Lord Willis of Knaresborough has been a supporter of TRS for many years: “I welcome the Chancellor’s announcement on the use of TRS – The Talent Retention Solution for the Construction Industry as part of Government’s response to the impact of Covid19. I should also like to congratulate the Business Minister Nadhim Zahawi MP and all those involved, on using an ‘existing solution’ and tailoring it to support people and businesses in the Construction Industry.”


Talent Retention Scheme (businesses)

24 July 2020

Flyer outlining how businesses can make the most of the industry-wide scheme.