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Construction firms granted multi-million pound funding boost to close skills gap

30/03/2016

CITB has announced over £7.5 million in targeted project funding to address the industry’s critical skills needs.

Twenty one industry-led projects have been successful in their funding bids, following the launch of CITB’s new Flexible and Structured Funds last autumn.

Over £2.5 million will be used to develop an online learning centre that helps construction firms build the skills of their supply chain. A further £2.7 million will fund a Homebuilding Skills Partnership, to bring the whole homebuilding sector together for the first time to tackle the skills challenge in housing. Close to £350,000 will fund a project that aims to increase the number of females working in social housing maintenance.

More than half of the funding (£4.5 million) will be accessed by 16 projects led by federations.

Employers are directly leading the remaining five projects at a total of £3.1m, of which four are collaborative proposals.

The projects, run from locations across Great Britain, will focus on key areas that are stunting the growth of the industry, such as careers guidance, upskilling existing employees, recruiting new talent and encouraging diversity within the sector.

Geeta Nathan, Head of Economic Analysis at CITB, commented:

“This exciting range of projects will help build a well-skilled workforce, boosting the industry for the long-term. Employers have identified the key issues affecting the construction industry and these funds will help provide the skills and training necessary to overcome them.

“This is the first funding announcement since we changed the way we target employer funding and the way firms can access it. The application process is now much more transparent and rigorous. We are now working much more closely with our industry to understand why the programmes are needed and what impact they will have. And we will monitor them closely to ensure they remain on course. Having moved from over 40 funding pots to two clearly defined funds, industry should now reap the benefits of clearer and more targeted funding.”

CITB’s Funding Team are currently working with bidders on the second round of funding.

Applications for the third round of funding will be accepted from April 19.

To find out more about CITB’s Flexible and Structure Fund please see:

http://www.citb.co.uk/funding/flexible-and-structured/

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