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One In Three City-Workers Said They Would Rather Have Learned A Practical Trade 

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Written by Amy

A third of British city workers that have built a career in an office wish they had learnt a trade sector. A plumber was voted the most popular choice for the trade Britons wish they had learnt, followed by an electrician or a hairdresser.

 According to a new survey, British city workers wish that they had pursued jobs in a practical trade instead of working on a desk-based career. In spite of more than half believing this change in vocation may have resulted in a lower income, the majority are still envious of a perceived ‘better work-life balance’ and ‘higher job satisfaction’.

 The team at undertook the survey as part of ongoing research, 2453 Britons took part in the questionnaire, all of whom were aged 18 years old or over and had been in a desk-based job for at least 4 years in a UK city. 

 First, all respondents were asked “If you could begin your training/career again, which route would you choose?” to which 66% stated that they would have pursued their chosen choice of an office-based job, while 34% confessed that, if they had their time again, they would opt to learn a practical trade.

 All those who would rather have learnt a trade were asked to share their reasons why, to which 71% stated that they believed they would have had a ‘better work life balance’, while 63% agreed that they would have ‘higher job satisfaction’ from a vocational trade. When asked what impact they felt a vocational career would have had on their yearly income, the majority (54%) stated that they believed they would earn less, while the remaining 46% felt that their earnings would have increased if they were not in an office job.

 Further motivations behind learning a trade included ‘the ability to travel more’ (31%), ‘more freedom to work for myself’ (26%) and ‘more freedom to choose my own hours’ (25%). A further one in five (19%) stated that they thought they would ‘be healthier’ if they worked in the trades rather than in an office job.

 When split according to gender, the vast majority of those who wished they had chosen a vocation trade were female (69%).

 All respondents who stated that they wished they’d learnt a trade were asked to identify which trades they would have preferred over their current office job, to which the following top five were revealed:

Plumber – 56%

Electrician – 48%

Mechanic – 45%

Hairdresser – 38%

Construction worker – 32%

 Lisa Evans from said: “Its really interesting to see how well the trades are doing at the moment in terms of recruitment and perceived status. Considering there has been a real push throughout the industry to raise opportunities for women in the trades, it is clearly taking effect/ Females in particular are being encouraged to think about the careers they want and consider options that they previously wouldn’t have necessarily thought about or felt comfortable with.”

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