The Bank of England has recently released figures that show the UK economy has retracted for the third consecutive quarter. The construction industry has been hardest hit in what is now officially a double-dip recession.
As Mr Cameron’s government looks to austerity measures to reduce the country’s deficit; firms within our industry are also looking for areas to make savings and cut budgets. We asked training, legal and commercial expert, Lorne Alway, to argue the case for protecting your training budget.
Lorne Alway, Managing Director of Construction Study Centre said:
“The construction industry has traditionally been one in which a downturn in activity is immediately followed by a cut in training budget. At Construction Study Centre we have been working with the industry for well over 20 years now to provide good quality training at a reasonable cost and to educate people and organisations about the benefits of gaining knowledge and qualifications in a tough market.
“Even in recession there is work and jobs; the problem is making sure you are best placed to secure them.”
Why keep training?
The benefits of continuing to train the people resource, which is the lifeblood of any successful organisation, through a recession are numerous. These include keeping staff up to date with legislation, heightened contractual and commercial awareness, developing management and motivational techniques, as well as keeping abreast of constructional regulatory controls such as Building and Fire Regulations.
All these issues, imparted to the relevant staff will have significant and tangible benefits not only to the organisation but also the individual.
Organisations, whether public or private, and involved at any stage of the project lifecycle are likely to benefit by;
- Providing a better service and being recognised for such
- Gaining access to more work opportunities
- Projecting the image and the delivery of quality
- Recognising problems and the solution to those problems earlier
- Developing and returning good quality staff
All of these are factors in project and procurement delivery and success, whether commercial or performance indicators.
From an individual’s point of view continuing good quality training develops them as people and professionals, allows them to grow within and with the business and to impart knowledge to others for the benefit of all and to represent the organisation in the best way.
In addition to improving the quality of service, training during and then coming out of a recession can be instrumental in helping organisations and individuals adapt to the market they find themselves in.
Even in recessions there is work and jobs, the problem is making sure you are best placed to secure them.
Over the last few years Construction Study Centre has been very successful, not least in providing training for organisations and people that want to offer their services in different sectors or even in alternative but related disciplines. This might involve learning about contracts or commercial arrangements, risks commonly found in different sectors or management and technical knowledge employed. This is true not just in different sectors but also in different countries and regions as well.
Continuing Professional Development (CPD) and Qualifications
It is important for both the individual and the organisation that they have the appropriate recognition of their training and knowledge to add credibility to their claims as they compete for what opportunities remain in the sector. We recognise this need at Construction Study Centre and so all our courses are accredited by the Construction CPD Certification Service. This enables our clients to be better placed to meet industry and employer requirements.
In addition many of the courses provide, either by way of the training itself or the knowledge gained, recognised steps towards formal qualifications.
Long term development
As well as delivering short term benefits, training can be used as a mechanism for guiding an organisation or individual towards longer term goals.
Good quality training by definition takes time to organise and structure, to suit the specific needs of the delegate and their organisation, be it on an in-house basis or one of the many public courses presented up and down the UK by Construction Study Centre.
Given then the lead in times as well as the benefits for the future, which are so essential in surviving and moving out of recession, then clearly the sooner the thought process is activated the better.