The Building Block guides 25 construction trainees into employment in first six months

Six months into the nationwide Construction Skills Fund (CSF) project, 1275 trainees have become site-ready to join the industry after completing their training at 20 new onsite hubs. Over 42% of learners have received job offers from local construction employers, surpassing the project’s target of 30%.

Of these trainees, over 100 have received classroom training and work experience through the Sheffield-based CSF hub, The Building Block, which is being co-ordinated by Sheffield City Council and its partners, which include Engie and Keepmoat. The hub became fully operational in March 2019. The £715k CSF investment gives local people with no previous construction experience the chance to become involved in various construction trades, and help with the construction of 10,000 new homes.

Following a two week programme where they benefit from learning a variety of key skills, learners gain invaluable work experience at one of the city’s housing development sites. From here, successful candidates have the opportunity to gain long term employment. So far, of the 25 learners who have moved into employment, 23 are from underrepresented groups. The scheme has provided a massive boost to the local area and the house-building targets there.

One trainee, Davey Allen, a 23 year old ex-mechanic from Sheffield, describes how he will ‘never look back’ now he has joined the construction industry through the CSF scheme. He is now working as an on-site labourer for City & County Property Maintenance and is looking forward to using his new found skills both in his new career and his home life.

Steve Radley, Policy Director of the Construction Industry Training Board, said: “Congratulations to all those learners who have obtained new skills and employment as a result of their hard work and with the support of the CSF.

“With 158,000 new skilled construction workers required by 2022, the CSF hubs offer a new and innovative route into construction and a major training boost for local projects.

“These early figures show a strong performance, thanks to real partnership between sites, employers and learners. We are looking forward to building on this excellent start, to help people from all walks of life get the skills they need to join our industry.”

Original press release:

Six months in to the nationwide £22m Construction Skills Fund project