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Construction recruitment crisis - we should return to YTS, say Aston Mead

Land agents Aston Mead say that the current recruitment crisis in the UK construction industry means more government spending on employment training is now essential. 

Land & Planning Director Adam Hesse thinks too many school leavers are automatically opting for a university education, regardless of whether it’s the right choice for them, while ignoring the possibilities that a job in construction offers. 

He said: “The latest figures from the British Chambers of Commerce indicate that over three quarters (76%) of British companies are struggling to hire new staff and the construction industry has been hardest hit. At the same time, the number of British 18-year-olds aiming to go to university directly from school continues to increase at a record pace and now stands at unprecedented levels. 

“Many of these youngsters still don’t know what profession they want to follow even after they’ve completed their degree, and have delayed getting a qualification as specialist plumbers, electricians, or bricklayers, which could help secure them a six-figure salary, every likelihood never to be out of work, and no student debt!” 

Hesse added: “We need a return to something like the days of the Youth Training Scheme (YTS), helping young people train for a career, with up to two years of paid employment and a full grounding in their chosen profession.”

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