CPA’s Skills Report recommends ways to formalise construction training

webThe Construction Products Association’s (CPA) Skills Report 2015 has highlighted an opportunity to put training programmes for builders and tradespeople on a formal footing with nationally recognised qualifications.

The report that was launched at the CPA’s Autumn Lunch on the 5th November maps the large number of training activities, which Association members currently run, particularly for ‘product-users’. Using the Roofing Industry Alliance (RIA) as a case study, the CPA recommends a new process to align these training activities to recognised qualifications.

Dr Diana Montgomery, chief executive of the Construction Products Association and chair of the Infrastructure UK Supply Chain Capacity and Skills Group, said: “The report shows that the CPA’s largest company members train on average 21,108 people through 3,523 courses per year.

“Our research suggests, however, that the majority of this training is informal and does not lead to a nationally recognised qualification. With the help of the CITB and our members, we believe we can develop a new framework to provide more structured, formal programmes from the existing informal training programmes.

“By establishing a recognised training process, manufacturers would not only have a greater confidence that their materials and products are being installed correctly by qualified individuals, but the builders and tradespeople would be better trained, with more flexible and professional credentials; all of which should in turn improve productivity.”

Adrian Belton, chief executive of the CITB, said: “This report finds that a lack of skilled staff, outdated qualifications, an ageing workforce, insufficient high-calibre candidates coming into construction, and difficulty accessing skills funding are all holding the industry back. We have to create more relevant qualifications, a greater number of apprenticeships and better continued professional development of the existing workforce to tackle these issues.”

Also included in the report is detailed information for member companies regarding products, Standard Occupational Classifications codes, products and materials manufacturing occupations and product user occupations. This information can be used to guide companies to the nationally recognised occupations, which may currently exist in their sectors, and help them grow their relationship with the relevant Sector Skills Council.

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