UCSA Construction Employer Forum
On Thursday 14th October, UCSA hosted its biannual Construction Employer Forum, which facilitates academia and industry to come together to discuss, share and collaborate on the construction skills for today and tomorrow, enabling UCSA to provide the qualifications that fit around life.
Around 25 construction employers from across Hertfordshire attended the Forum, with presentations from organisations, including Willmott Dixon, CITB, Morgan Sindall and Construction Innovation Hub. The meeting gave construction companies a face-to-face platform to discuss and share skills challenges and solutions on how we can work together to address the skills shortage and create a talent pipeline within the context of the county.
This year marks the 5th year anniversary since the 2016 Mark Farmer Review ‘Modernise or Die’ was published, and we saw it timely to reflect on the findings in this report in light of where the industry is today. Whilst the pace of change has not been as vast as the report suggested, we discussed and shared examples of how agile the construction industry was in response to the pandemic and how the past 18 months has accelerated digital enablement across the sector increasing take up quicker than if it had been the normal business evolution. The consensus around the room on Thursday was that as a sector we are not doing enough on Diversity and Inclusion, with no significant trends emerging on how the industry is ensuring diversity across its workforce. Some employers left the Forum with an urgency to do more on Diversity and Inclusion within their organisation and took considerations back their colleagues to discuss how more could be done.
The purpose of UCSA’s Construction Employer Forum is to drive programme improvement, ensure curricula meets the needs of the market, embeds practitioner insight and informs of developments which may impact on professional practice. With this in mind, UCSA shared its content to further gain employer and industry insight to equip UCSA students with cutting edge industry developments and practices, therefore, industry is paramount to our academic business. With the closing date for bookings on to UCSA’s Construction Site Management Degree Apprenticeship (CIOB accredited) January 2022 course closing on the 19th November, UCSA wants to ensure it continues to meet the needs of the market.
Our next Construction Employer Forum will be on Thursday 24th March 2022. If you and your business would like to help to:
- embed practitioner insight in to UCSA’s programmes.
- align UCSA’s programmes with career opportunities now and in the future.
- engage with industry to ensure Employer and market needs are met.
- support employers with the production of outstanding learning opportunities for future and existing employees.
- ensure that the needs of apprentice employers are fulfilled
- provide critical friendship to the UCSA team by identifying and promoting areas of best practice, and supporting the development and oversight of continuous improvement in line with professional standards and regulations then please get in touch with me Celeste Jones, Executive Director at UCSA: Celeste.Jones@oaklands.ac.uk