Moving to Industry 4.0, The report: The skills revolution, says that the next industrial revolution will transform the construction sector, but that it will be necessary to recycle thousands of workers to keep pace with technological change.
It also suggests that British construction could provide an additional 25 billion pounds per year to the British economy by 2040, but only if its productivity “gap” is closed.
The report states that the figures – although only projections – give an idea of the scale of the pool of talent that will need to be trained to allow the construction sector to move into Industry 4.0 and adopt technologies that improve productivity.
An international consultancy and construction company, Mace warned that without a major effort to retrain the current workforce and attract a new generation of more technologically savvy workers, the construction industry and the United Kingdom could lose the potential productivity benefits of the next industrial revolution. Some vocational training programs like NVQ carpentry program for carpenter assessment has been encouraging the quality workforce in the country. .
The construction sector has long suffered from a productivity gap, where it has not been able to meet the productivity increases seen in other industries in the United Kingdom.
Improving productivity in the sector would also have a multiplier effect on housing construction and the delivery of infrastructure in the United Kingdom, helping to alleviate housing shortages and ensuring that large-scale infrastructure projects are more likely to be delivered on time and within budget.
The Mace report proposes three key recommendations that will help ensure that the necessary number of workers can be re-trained:
Accelerate the use of new technologies in training – By requiring the introduction of the latest 3D printing technologies and augmented and virtual reality tools in industry training programs and in the “construction clubs” of schools, the sector can better respond to future challenges in terms of competencies, while ensuring that courses are attractive to potential students and helping them to recruit.
Report on lifelong learning decisions – At this time, data is scarce in terms of the skills we will need in the future. By commissioning large-scale sector research and working with government agencies such as the ONS and the CITB, the construction industry can ensure that its competency profile changes to meet real needs.
Revolutionize our traditional educational programs – The current learning and training reforms will not be enough to prepare the workforce for Industry 4.0. We need to update the curriculum that is now offered to reflect the modern off-site construction and assembly methods that will be needed in the future.
Mace has placed innovation, research and investment in the development of competencies at the center of its business strategy. In 2016, the company invested 42 million pounds sterling only in research and development. This has included the development of industry-leading construction techniques, such as the “jump factories” that Mace uses in the construction of its East Village project in Stratford, London.
Mark Reynolds, Mace’s executive director and leader in skills at the Construction Leadership Council, said: “Everyone now recognizes that the current skills shortage needs to be addressed.” Our latest report highlights the opportunities offered by the digital revolution, how We can dramatically bridge the skills gap in the future and how we can cope with the “productivity challenge” of £ 25,000 million.
The recommendations we have made will go some way towards addressing these issues. The industry, our training bodies and the government need to work together to make the most of what Industry 4.0 can offer.