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An interview with our expert John Ashcroft

During Women in Construction Week, we wanted to interview the experts within our business and ask them on their opinions regarding diversity/equality within the Construction industry. At Nicholas Associates, we do our utmost to ensure we provide equal opportunities to all of our female candidates and have worked with so many inspirational female clients.

John Ashcroft is our Managing Consultant and we asked him a few questions…

Introduce yourself?

“My name is John Ashcroft, I am a Managing Consultant at the Nicholas Associates Construction division, part of the Nicholas Associates Group. I am an experienced recruiter with over 15 years of recruitment solutions experience in the built environment.”

Regarding skill shortage, which skill sets do you think are under the most stress?

“The skills shortage in construction has been a growing concern for construction companies, and as more time goes by, the problem becomes more pressing, although skill shortages are prevalent across the sector, blue collar workers appear to be the hardest to find, Bricklayers, Carpenters and Joiners are the most difficult tradespeople to source. Recruiting Quantity Surveyors and Estimators is proving just as difficult. Fewer people are entering the industry, attracting young people into a career in construction is something that all construction organisations should be getting involved in.”

In your experience, have you witnessed any bias towards women in Construction?

“No, I believe the attitude towards women working in the construction industry has changed significantly over the last 10 years, there has been a number of campaigns recently aimed at getting more women into the construction industry, Multiplex (a large international construction contractor) has targeted itself to employ woman-led teams on 10% of its projects by 2025, The Construction News has launched the Inspiring “Women in Construction Pledge” the pledge aims to promote the construction industry as being gender neutral, welcoming of women in all roles.”

What are your thoughts on Gender Equality in the built environment sector?

“Addressing the low number of women in construction starts at school age, it’s important to educate young people early about the potential career opportunities that are available. Young women must feel that a career in the construction industry is both feasible and appealing to lay the foundations for these opportunities in later life, the education system must ensure that young people are not being consciously or subconsciously discouraged from studying subjects based solely on their gender. Celebrating successful women in construction and showcasing historical women in the industry is a great way to push back against gender stereotypes.”

You can connect with our Managing Consultant John on LinkedIn here

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