More than 750 jobs to go at CITB as three year business plan revealed

Sarah Beale

The Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) has announced plans to reduce its workforce by more than 50% over the next three years as part of new reforms to the organisation designed to “modernise its business and relentlessly focus on skills”.

The business plan estimates that the current figure of 1,370 employees will become fewer than 600 by 2020/21.

Based on feedback from levy-payers, industry and the UK government’s ITB Review, CITB said its Vision 2020: Business Plan 2018-21 adds “substantial detail” to the Agenda for Change published last year, revealing a £689 million investment into skills.

Investment across the 2018-2021 period will reflect CITB’s strategic priorities:

  • £613m on Training and Development to deliver skills outcomes
  • £31m on Engagement, securing the skills policy framework

  • £17m on Careers, increasing from £3m in 2018/19 to £8m in 2020/21
  • £9m on building CITB’s evidence base, identify needs and delivering outcomes
  • £4m on Standards and Qualifications, providing consistency and quality.

  • Reforms highlighted in the new business plan are already underway with the introduction of CITB’s training model and new grant scheme revealed earlier this month.

    CITB chief executive, Sarah Beale, said: “CITB has listened, and we have now taken action. This business plan sets out our ambitions for the next three years. It shows how CITB’s work across England, Scotland and Wales will modernise and repurpose. By 2020 we will be the ‘levy in, skills out’ body construction employers asked for, doing less, better, while being fully transparent and accountable.

    “I am confident that this business plan will make a radical difference to CITB, enabling us to meet the skills needs of construction.”

    Civils contractors said that the publication of the CITB’s business plan shows that reforms to that body will deliver a “laser-like” focus on skills outcomes for the UK’s construction sector.

    Marie-Claude Hemming, director of external affairs for the Civil Engineering Contractors Association (CECA), said: “It is to be welcomed that the CITB plans substantial investment in construction skills over the next three years, as well as implementing reforms that will cut bureaucracy, improve its communications, and implement better governance.

    “Making sure the workforce is sufficiently skilled to deliver the substantial pipeline of work the Government has planned is one of the most pressing challenge facing our industry.

    “A reformed CITB must maintain a laser-like focus on putting the right skills in place, and on pin-pointing funding to enhance construction training, to deliver a recognised, world-class and innovative approach to developing the UK’s construction workforce.

    “We look forward to working closely with CITB during this modernisation process, and to ensuring that the construction and built environment sectors are able to upskill the existing workforce and attract sufficient numbers of new entrants to meet projected demand.”

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