Not so long ago, we were struggling to address the shortage of skilled building services engineers in the UK.

As the recession has deepened, negative press has driven people away from our industry.

We should be focusing on the positives, particularly after the chancellor’s green Budget. The government has committed to reduce carbon emissions to 34% by 2020 and is ploughing more than £400m of funding into encouraging low-carbon energy and green manufacturing, all which should come as positive news to the building services industry. It also committed a further £100m for energy efficient housing, and there is the £800m capital schools programme.

We should welcome the investment and appreciate that sustaining employment and creating jobs is a key focus. It is important this message feeds through to the next generation of would-be building services professionals. If we fail to attract new, young workers to this industry, we can only expect to face skills shortages once more.

Mike McNally, business director, Hays Building Services