At least 10% of construction workers were still on vacation at the end of June, despite ongoing concerns about access to qualifications, according to initial figures from HMRC.
Preliminary figures for the month showed the number of people employed in the industry fell from 140,500 in May to 129,600 as part of the government’s initiative to keep the coronavirus going.
But even with the decline, which is also a huge drop from the industry’s peak in April 2020 when 723,600 workers were on leave, the numbers suggest that construction occupancy remains at 10%.
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There are growing concerns that the expansion of the vacation program is contributing to the labor shortage in the industry.
Last month, the CITB said the program, which was extended to the end of September, would help reduce labor shortages with a faster-than-expected resurgence in demand for lockdown easing.
And Victoria Short, executive director of recruiting specialist Randstad, said the program was not helping employers find employees as the number of applicants appeared to have decreased while the number of vacancies had almost doubled.