Scott-James Ely, Skills & Employment Strategy Manager for HS2 and Andrew Wolstenholme, Chief Executive of Crossrail provided key note speeches at the Construction Industry Council’s BIM2050 Group’s Building Our Future Industry, Fast Forward 2050: Construction conference, hosted by KPMG at their Canary Wharf offices today.
Some 150 professionals representing every facet of the construction arena signed up for the event. They included senior members of key industry players, including Tier 1 and 2 contractors, design consultants, asset (infrastructure and property) operators and higher education providers.
Designed to bring together industry stakeholders to discuss the future skills requirements in the sector, the workshops supported debate, innovative thinking and dynamic views, which were distilled into themes. Conference participants were asked to apply these themes to their own sector and vote on them. Opinions divided the room on some hypotheses which were presented to the audience. The majority disagreed that pop-ups or nano corporates would be most profitable and attract the most talented recruits in the future; near full agreement was reached on visibility of big data and information will drive profit and performance going forward; agreement also prevailed over strategizing by scenario testing becoming more prevalent.
A panel session chaired by Professor Tim Broyd (UCL), with Mike Putnam (Skanska), Alan Muse (RICS), Simon Rawlinson (EC Harris), Rachael Atkinson (BIM2050, Mace) closed the conference.
“It’s really important that the industry indulges in opportunities like this to think about where we need to get to”, commented Andrew Wolsenholme, at the end of the conference. “How do the different parts of the industry, many of whom are world class, leverage output as an industry, not just the individual companies? What we’re trying to do at Crossrail is to link the vertical-ness of our supply chains, right across from government funding departments to universities, in order to contribute to this industry issue of going towards a digital economy.”
Opening the conference, Tony Burton, CIC Chairman said “Today’s event is a chance to share and debate the views of sector leaders and experts on the future skills requirements for the industry. We have yet to unlock the true potential of our sector and make it a place of choice for future talent. We must achieve that aim.”