For many the construction industry is perceived as somewhat male-dominated and that much more work needs to be done to ensure that we are attracting female candidates to the sector directly from our schools and colleges.
The ONS data shows that for almost a decade the percentage of women in construction has not shown a significant increase despite the industry’s active efforts to attract new recruits and access a wider talent pool. For the past two years women remain under represented in the construction industry at just over 12%.
With so few women in construction in general then, it’s no surprise that women are also struggling to get into the more senior positions or even to get promoted.
According to Construction News one in five construction companies have never employed a woman in a senior position, with half of all firms saying they have never had a female manager in their business. Also, Construction News notes that a quarter of the women that are in the construction industry believe their male colleagues are favoured when it comes to promotion.
On a positive note, Return Property Services is proud of the work they are doing to improve the image of the construction industry with their zero-tolerance of sexism in the workplace and focus on gender equality throughout their business.
But what else can be done?
We’d like to see schools and collages offering much more career advice and information about the construction industry.
Teachers and careers officers – please help us to address the gender balance in the construction workforce then hopefully we can shift the mindset of future generations and drive a change in the culture.