CITB’s employer network pilot to offer ‘sector specific’ support

EMPLOYERS can now receive advice and support from sector specific networks, as part of the Construction Industry Training Board’s (CITB) employer network pilot.

The organisation revealed that, as well as the local training networks, selected sectors will also be supported to make it easier to find and fund appropriate construction training.

Hire Association Europe (HAE) is among the first of the sector specific networks to be introduced, supporting plant, tool and equipment hire employers with queries directly related to their field. With a budget of more than £300,000, it can help ensure employers receive the right training for skills.

The CITB explained the model aims to create a more ‘simplified’ process and has removed the need to access the grant scheme, with HAE helping to organise and fund the training on behalf of employers.

The pilot launched its local training networks in August 2022 with an initial £800,000 investment. With a focus on connecting employers to established delivery partners, the aim is to help recognise training priorities and the best routes to achieving them.

The 12-month local initiative is available to 3,800 levy-registered construction businesses and offered across five locations in Scotland, England and Wales.

Tim Balcon, CITB chief executive, said, “I’m thrilled to see the great results this pilot is already achieving in such a short space of time! We’re really excited to join forces with Hire Association Europe and believe their support will have an invaluable impact on the plant, tool and equipment hire sector.

“The real drive behind this project is ensuring employers get the support they need to train and develop their workforces. By expanding the networks to include niche technical expertise, this should simplify the process and make it even easier for employers to get the most out of their training budgets.”

Paul Gaze, CEO, Hire Association Europe, added, “Hire Association Europe is delighted to be working with CITB on the Sector Employer Network Programme. It is vital that we invest in the plant, tool and equipment workforce to develop the required skills and competencies, as the sector underpins the wider construction industry.

“Nothing gets built, maintained or repaired without the professional hire and rental workforce. We commend CITB for its investment in developing the skills to drive forward construction.”