Construction: Improving Your Skills to Stand Out from the Crowd

Darren Scott

February 8, 2017

As an employee within the engineering and construction sectors, you are only as employable as your skills. We live in a disruptive era; with changes in materials, technology, techniques, and regulations constantly lurking on the horizon. To remain employable, today’s workforce needs to be committed to learning and development. By doing so, you’ll be able to improve your skill-set, giving you the chance to take on more responsibilities, grow in your current role, and lead the workforce of tomorrow. Training offers the opportunity to take on new challenges, to work across sectors, and to gain vital experience that will ensure that you are more valuable to an employer or the company you work for. Remember, the best talent will always be in demand.

At CarmichaelUK, we’re committed to working with you for the whole of your career, helping you find the right placements and learning to help develop a sustainable and fulfilling profession and with that in mind we thought we’d explore some of the skills that will help you to get ahead and stand out from the crowd!

BIM – Digital Skills
Over the coming years, digital technology is set to revolutionise the construction and engineering sectors. In a recent cross-industry report from Oxford Economics, analysis revealed that construction firms that have embraced digital technology have grown their revenue by 5.9%. Digital technology will become increasingly important across all sectors, as organisations unlock its potential for improving efficiencies and boosting profitability.

In the construction industry, it’s fairly apparent that digital technology is starting to take hold. One particular example is the widespread adoption of Building Information Modelling (BIM). BIM now has Government backing and is a central theme in the UK Government Construction Strategy. If you consider that the public sector accounts for 40% of overall construction, it’s likely that this mandate will lead to organisations seeking workers with BIM skills to ensure they can remain competitive and in line with Government policy.

In the coming years, we’re going to see new technologies and materials flourish within engineering, rail, and construction. To stay ahead, professionals will need to actively seek out new skills and training to remain relevant in an increasingly digitised environment. Early adopters will reap the most benefits, and Luddites will surely be left behind. Have you got your finger on the pulse?

Health & Safety
In the construction, rail, and engineering sectors, health and safety skills often appear highly on an employer’s list of requirements. At its core, health and safety helps to reduce accidents – saving organisations both time and money. Given that over 200 people are killed each year in accidents at work, and over one million people are injured, it’s apparent that a commitment to health and safety can be highly beneficial for organisations.

With an increased focus on efficiency and standards across the aforementioned sectors, it’s likely that health and safety skills will continue to be sought after. Moving forward we can envisage that health and safety skills will need to be refreshed continually as new technologies and materials come to fruition, especially as employers begin to realise the benefits of advancements such as robotics and AI. High innovation will ensure that standards and regulations continue to offer new opportunities for those who commit to learning and development within the field of health and safety. Whilst not everyone will want to work as a health and safety officer, those with a good grounding in health and safety will be significantly more employable than those without.

Project Planning Skills
Project planning and scheduling is an essential part of the construction process, it’s the backbone of the entire project and it’s what keeps the project on track and within budget. Depending on the size of the project and the sector that you’re working in different skills may be required, however most planning roles demand strong IT skills. As new technologies such as 4D planning emerge and as P6 planning systems continue to evolve, the role of a Planning Engineer is developing and new digital and technical skills are in demand.

As a construction professional, investing in relevant training to boost your IT skills and learn new features in systems such as Oracle’s Primavera P6 system is essential to growing your skill set and broadening your career opportunities. Taking control of your professional development demonstrates to potential employers your motivation and commitment to your role.

Are you giving yourself the best chance for success? Many of our consultants are also trained engineers and are happy to answer any questions you might have about your future development in the construction industry. Send an email to info@carmichaeluk.com