3 July 2018

New funding schemes to help tackle skills shortage

The skills shortage is a major task for the construction industry. Build UK is pleased that the Mayor of London and government has acknowledged this with two different funding schemes, and would encourage members to use these as much as possible.

Mayor’s Construction Academy

The Mayor of London has set up the Mayor’s Construction Academy (MCA) to help more Londoners train in the skills they need to access construction-sector vacancies on the capital’s housing sites. The academy will accredit high quality construction skills training provision and improve coordination between providers and employers ensuring that construction skills training provision meets employer’s needs. Following the recent announcement about construction training providers in London who have achieved the MCA Quality Mark, applications are now being invited to lead an MCA hub. MCA hub applications should include a wide variety of industry partners including employers, at least one MCA quality-marked provider and other stakeholders. The hubs will ensure employers skills requirements are met and enable employer-led work placement opportunities.

Construction Skills Fund

Skills Minister Anne Milton has announced a £22 million Construction Skills Fund to help tackle the skills gap in the construction industry, funding at least 20 training hubs on construction sites in England. The hubs will help train those looking for a career in construction to help the government deliver their target of building 300,000 new homes a year by the mid-2020s. The 18-month scheme is funded by the Department for Education and will be administered by CITB. This fund will help meet the needs of employers and tackle the construction skills shortage, whilst also supporting those who want to join the industry. CITB is now calling on employers to submit expressions of interest for both existing and prospective on-site learning hubs.

How to choose which scheme to apply for

The main difference between the two schemes is that the Construction Skills Fund will use on-site learning hubs, whereas the MCA has a strong focus on further education provision with employer collaboration.

CITB has agreed that organisations can apply to both schemes, as it is a benefit to industry for employers to be involved in both. However, where organisations apply to both schemes, they will need to clearly demonstrate the added value that being approved under both initiatives would bring.

To understand more about the different schemes please contact Janette Welton-Pai at CITB.