Speaking at the event the day before he was axed from his role as the Government’s Chief Construction Advisor to the dismay of many, Peter Hansford suggested we could reach millennials, and the new generation of workers by adopting a school. The Class of Your Own
scheme is already in place and it would be relatively easy for all to sign up and change attitudes about construction at this stage. As Sarah Fenton from the CITB pointed out, “the construction industry is constantly competing for talent against other sectors”. So might as well try and give ourselves a head start.
Phil Cusack, President of the Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce, wrapped up the summit, concluding improving the image of the industry and educating people about it were the main drivers for improvement. So how can the industry do this? I’d say the way clients, contractors and subcontractors approach community engagement is making the biggest difference. This is how we add value and how we innovate – by interacting directly with communities in new ways, we affect the way projects are run. The new City Football Academy
we built for Manchester City is one example of how community engagement can drive innovation. Proof that a step change in an approach can have a dramatic and lasting effect. And that’s what we need if the industry is to meet the 2025 targets.