Workload increasing for Scottish construction workers, survey finds

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31st July 2015 15:20 - Construction

A recent survey has revealed that workloads for construction workers in Scotland have risen by a third, as a result of a rise in private house Workload increasing for Scottish construction workers, survey findsbuilding and office construction.

The survey – entitled the RICSUK Construction Market Survey – discovered that 33 per cent more respondents reported higher activity levels in Q2 of 2015, double the figure of Q1.

Of the respondents, approximately 75 per cent of construction companies anticipate an increase in workload by an average of 3.8 per cent. The net balance reporting higher workloads was 45 per cent in the private housing sector and 40 per cent in the private commercial sector.

The RICSUK Construction Market Survey indicated a rise in workloads across all industries, all around the UK, although, the rise was more widespread in England, Scotland and Wales. The growth in Northern Ireland was slower than the rest of the United Kingdom.

73 per cent of the surveyors in Scotland said that they anticipate a rise in workloads; however, some surveyors highlighted their concerns surrounding the on-going professional skills shortages.

Sarah Speirs, RICS Scotland director, said of the findings:

“The upturn in workloads has led to more competitive tendering, particularly across public sector projects, but a lack of accessible finance is now affecting many of our members and while concern over labour shortages dipped slightly, the demand for cost and project management skills rose.

“Also typical as workloads recover is the emergence of other impediments to growth – outside of labour and finance constraints – such as planning and regulatory barriers, which could be exacerbated if cuts are made to local authority planning departments as backlogs in planning applications could have a knock-on effect to work pipelines.”

As well as Speirs, George Mackie, a RICS member, from from Ogilvie Construction Ltd, added:

“There still remains a serious shortage of construction professionals required to deliver the increase in workloads being experienced.

“This has the added effect of key staff being subject to increased unsolicited approaches from various sources as well as through social media.

“This will drive up costs as companies need to compete to maintain adequate resource levels.”

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