Skills shortage could create housing 'timebomb'

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Tuesday, September 12, 2017 at 5:08PM

Promises by politicians to tackle the UK's housing crisis are just "hot air" without skilled workers, a new report warns.

Public and private sector companies are planning to hire staff but a skills shortage "time bomb" lurks on the horizon, said the ManpowerGroup.

Its survey of 2,100 employers found that construction was the most upbeat sector, with signs that recruitment will be the strongest for a decade.

James Hick, managing director of the ManpowerGroup, said builders were as optimistic as any time since the financial crisis.

He said: "Some of this work is the urgent testing and repair on much of Britain's housing stock.

"The tough reality lurking behind these positive indicators is that hiring intentions may not come to fruition because of difficulties attracting and retaining skilled employees.

"Without a pool of skilled workers to actually do the work, buildings will go unbuilt and projects will flounder.

"There is lots of talk around what we need to do to fix the UK's ailing housing market but politicians' promises are just hot air without the essential skilled talent needed to deliver these programmes."

Hiring is being "ramped up" in the public sector, the report added.

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