Materials firms, developers and contractors will be hardest hit

Covid-19 is set to cost almost 10% of all construction workers their jobs by September, according to a Construction Leadership Council survey.

The organisation’s people survey has found that there is an anticipated reduction in the construction workforce of 9.9% in the next three months.

construction site

Source: Shutterstock

The industry is bracing itself for significant job losses by the autumn

There is also expected to be a 7.7% reduction in the number of directly employed workers across the industry by September. 

In the longer term, 43% of respondents anticipate making redundancies, with up to 20% of their workforce being affected.

There is also expected to be a 26.7% reduction in the number of self-employed and agency workers in the next three months. 

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Homebuilders, specialist contractors and contractors are the most significant users of selfemployed and agency workers and while homebuilders and specialist contractors expect to reduce their numbers by just 4% and 11% respectively, contractors are looking to reduce self-employed and agency workers by 42%.

CLC - anticipated reduction in workforce

Source: Construction Leadership Council

Other sectors most likely to reduce their numbers are material suppliers, who expect a 54.5% drop, and consultants, who anticipate a reduction of 45.6%.

It found that 32% of direct employees are currently furloughed, with all sectors of the industry having accessed the government’s coronavirus job retention scheme at some point.

The survey said 43% of apprentices are currently furloughed, with 6.7% likely to lose their jobs by September. In the longer term, 10% of respondents are expecting to make apprentices redundant.

Almost two-thirds of companies expect to take on fewer apprentices at the next intake in September, 38% are looking to recruit the same number, with just 2% planning to take on more.

Just 21% of respondents have a graduate scheme, with clients most likely to run schemes

It is anticipated that there will be a 32% fall overall in the number of graduate places available at the next intake, although homebuilders and contractors are expecting a smaller drop of between eight and 12%.

CLC - current training needs

Source: Construction Leadership Council