The UK is currently experiencing a dire shortage of qualified tradespeople across a range of industries – from plumbing to electrical work to carpentry, there is simply more work than there are qualified workers. Contractors and tradespeople are faced with incredibly busy schedules, while customers are left waiting longer and longer as the labour shortage deepens. We’re hearing about it on the news and in our day-to-day lives. So, what can we do about it?

Gas engineer Julie McGowan

Women in trades can provide the solutions Britain needs today.

While women have traditionally been left out of these important industries (even the language seems foreign to us – we still often say tradesman, for instance, instead of tradesperson), continuing to ignore this entire half of the labour force would be a sure way for these industries to remain in the past.

Trade skills depend only on qualified workers with a dedicated work ethic. Gender should not, and does not, play a role. So long as a woman can be trained to the same standards and acquire the same certifications, she will be equally valuable in the job field. We encourage more women to get started!

We’re already seeing a slow and steady increase in the number of women occupying these male-dominated professions. Usually, the perks of life for a tradesperson, such as good pay and setting your own hours, are what have begun to draw them in.

However, things aren’t going to change overnight. There is still much hesitation among women and men alike, sometimes because of stick-in-the-mud attitudes but other times because it will simply take a generation retiring before a new one can be ushered in. Some trades have women employment as low as 6% — obviously, there is still a long way to go. Nonetheless, as more women choose these careers, more women will see them succeeding, and more men will begin to accept that women of equal certification are their equals in the industry.

The current skills gap and labour demand in Britain can be satisfied by men and women alike – a certified woman offers the same skills and value as does a man.

 

Why should women take up trades?

By training up for a trade career, women can attain skills that will serve them well for a lifetime. If you don’t see yourself sitting at a desk, or you enjoy working with your hands, you’re already a good fit – don’t let being a woman serve as a barrier to entry in these rewarding industries! There are a great deal of gender-independent reasons why taking up a trade is a desirable path:

  • Stable, good pay– Annual salaries for experienced tradespeople, from carpenters to plumbers to electrical workers, often exceed £30,000+.
  • Demand and job security– With the high demand for these skill sets, an increasing population, and a growing housing market dependent on trades industries, job security and job guarantees are practically a given.
  • Work for yourself– While apprenticeships and other certification routes will require you to spend some time working under others, tradespeople very often find themselves contracted out as independent workers. If you choose to continue on this route, you can start your own company and be your own boss – that means setting your own pay, choosing your own hours, and working for yourself.
  • Little to no student debt– You won’t need four years of university education to become a tradesperson. In fact, you need to commit less time now than ever before, thanks to fast-track training courses. Education and training like we offer at our centres will have you qualified and working in no time, for a fraction of the cost of a higher education degree.

How to become a certified tradesperson

In the past, becoming a tradesperson required years of education and considerable time in an apprenticeship. However, with the advent of intensive training courses like those we offer, it has become a considerably less costly and time-consuming ordeal.

There are many locations throughout the UK where you will be able to learn your trade at one of our centres. Whether you’re retraining, looking to join the trades industry for the first time, or improving upon your existing skill set, we take pride in training a diversity of people at a variety of stages in their careers.

We tailor our courses to those taking them because we don’t believe in one-size-fits-all education. By adapting to your circumstances, we’re better able to train you to be the best tradesperson you can be. This allows our students to learn at their own pace – whether that’s rapidly and intensively, or intermittently to keep up with work and family commitments.

You can browse the many courses we offer and find something that suits your situation, from a new career to a quick certification upgrade. Choose from part-time or full-time, and contact us as soon as you’re ready to get started!

No matter your race, gender, age, creed, or existing level of skill, you’re welcome to learn with us!

To learn more about the courses that we offer here at Skills Training Group, please click here.