While the last five years has seen some progress, there is still a paucity of women working in construction.
The image and public perception of the industry as male-dominated still plays a part and there is work to be done to ensure we’re attracting the best candidates from both genders.
But let’s start on a positive note with news of progress that is helping recruitment which the industry can capitalise on.
Firstly, there are senior women in the industry setting a fantastic example and driving for change. Is there scope for them to be more visible and to make their voices more clearly heard?
Secondly, the CCS is confident the work they’re doing to improve the image of the industry is having an effect with less sexism and more consideration.
More specifically, CCS monitors question site managers about their company’s equality and diversity policy during their site visits and scores come via evidence of active policy implementation.
These questions and wider discussions during site visits are raising awareness and changing the culture. But could the culture be changing faster and could those higher up the ladder beat the drum louder?
Lastly, but by no means least, the 2025 Construction Working Group has the recruitment of women on the agenda and will be recommending ways to address the shortfall. It will be important that any recommendations are practical and can be acted upon.
But what else can be done?
Grass roots schools careers advice for girls rarely includes construction as an option.
We need to explore routes into the system to encourage a positive and concerted effort by teachers and advisers to communicate the rich variety of opportunities in the industry and its changing culture.
It would be wonderful to see all levels and opportunities on the menu for serious consideration by both sexes as they embark on their journey into the world of work and for the industry to welcome more women.
Robert Biggs is a Considerate Constructors Scheme Monitor and former scheme chairman