What could Brexit mean for construction sector wages?

What could Brexit mean for construction sector wages?

David Ogden from allthetopbananas.com takes a look at salary trends and the possible impact of Brexit in the construction sector.

Unless you’ve been living in a dark hole for the last couple of years, it is impossible to escape the debate and feeling of uncertainty surrounding Brexit, with a planned exit date from the EU of 29th March rapidly approaching. 

Experts on both sides have at best, found predicting what will happen difficult to say the least.

What is certain, by reviewing 2018, the signs appear cautiously optimistic for the construction industry.

Rising wages

Taking builders’ salaries as a representative trade within the sector, the trend for advertised wages over the last 12 months has steadily increased.

Job search engine allthetopbananas.com analysed more than 7,000 vacancies on its site between November 2017 and November 2018. 

Considering a low of £31,603 in June 2018 and a high of £35,184 in July 2018, the average advertised salary on offer climbed steadily to £33,727 by November this year,

This compares favourably to the current UK average salary, which according to the Office For National Statistics, is £27,271.  

One explanation for the rising wages can be linked back to the start of discussions around Brexit.  This affected pay in a positive way as early as November 2015. 

Industry faced a greater shortage of workers because of the fewer European Union workers immigrating to the UK and those leaving.  The lowest in six years which could have played a part in pushing up wages.

However, negatively, as reported by accountancy firm KPMG and the Recruitment & Employment Confederation, the overall availability of staff generally continued downwards towards the end of 2018.

Supply and demand

The trend over the last 12 months appears to show it’s getting tougher to get a job within the sector.

The number of searches for construction vacancies show jobseeker demand has increased, whereas availability has decreased.

It’s good news to see the trend of increasing advertised wages going up and above the national average.  While things seem to be getting tougher in terms demand outstripping available construction jobs, there are still more than 90,000 jobs in the sector available across the UK on our site.




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