The Skills Partnership’s Business Plan 2016-2020 had the stated objective ‘to engage subcontractors and suppliers in collaboration across the industry, leading change and the development of a skilled workforce which meets the needs of all.’ In its ‘Size of the Challenge’ Paper in 2017 the HBSP felt that it needed to:
- Get the major home builders / developers/ housing associations / LEP’s / local and regional authorities to recognise the need to help the supply chain improve workforce development.
- Identify what these groups can do to drive, support and incentivise the supply chain to recruit and train.
- Engage the supply chain and help them recognise the advantages of having a fully skilled workforce – companies need to see how improved skills and knowledge can increase productivity, create loyalty within the workforce and importantly contribute to winning more work and increased margins.
- Help the supply chain claim CITB grant where applicable.
During 2019, the Supply Chain activity group reshaped its format and objectives into 3 working groups that will focus on specific challenges:
- Internal Services Group - How do we speed up build time and retain quality? One of the specific areas of focus is multi-skilling and the group has debated the links between plumbing and electrical work, but do not feel that there are gains from staff being trained in both. The group was very interested in the NHBC construction quality reviews and how these can be used within the supply chain. They have also agreed to support the development of a Domestic Electrical Apprenticeship. The group also suggested a competition/link to industry awards aimed at supply chain companies to encourage the suggestion of simple/innovative ways to reduce build time within the current methods of building. HBF team scoped this idea, but feel that the pandemic impact on-site productivity and ways of working means that now is not a suitable time to consider its launch.
- Groundworks Group - This group is linking with an existing consortium of groundworkers and Fareham College to understand their model and is considering how to share best practice, promote and grow training and Apprenticeships in this area. The group has produced a film covering the key strategic variances in this project that make it different which has shared interest from others which can be found here.
- Materials Group – Focus on reducing the number of material defects. Linking to NHBC construction quality reviews and supported by both NHBC and Travis Perkins, the group is looking at any help the manufacturer can give via design or instructions which can address reported defects.