Hudson Contract: Self-employed tradespeople enjoy best earnings since start of pandemic

Hudson Contract: Self-employed tradespeople enjoy best earnings since start of pandemic

Self-employed tradespeople have enjoyed their best month for earnings since the start of the pandemic, according to Hudson Contract.

Average weekly pay rose by 3.7 per cent to £920 during March, the highest figure since February 2020. This is 57% higher than the median weekly pay for full-time employees. Hudson supplies audit, contract and payroll services to more than 2,500 construction SMEs and is the biggest provider of its kind with annual turnover of £1.6bn.

Ian Anfield, managing director, said: “Our latest figures show that self-employed tradespeople are reaping the rewards for their enterprise and efforts. Many have carried on during lockdowns to deliver the housing and infrastructure that Britain relies on. Self-employment in construction offers financial freedom and flexibility for highly skilled individuals and enables projects to be completed safely, on time and on budget.”

The best-performing regions for earnings growth last month were Yorkshire and the Humber (+7.5%), the East of England (+5%) and the West Midlands (+4.9%). Weekly earnings reached all-time highs in the East of England (£1,016) and the East Midlands (£968) during March. All regions except Wales had month-on-month earnings growth.


Region March 2021


Month on Month

% Change

Year on Year

% Change

North East £788 2.3% 10.5%
North West £901 2.9% 5.0%
Yorkshire and the Humber £859 7.5% -8.3%
East Midlands £968 3.6% 4.6%
West Midlands £927 4.9% 12.1%
Wales £833 -2.1% -11.6%
East of England £1,016 5.0% 5.2%
London £908 3.2% 2.0%
South East £970 3.1% 4.0%
South West £886 2.9% -1.3%


Mr Anfield added: “We continue to see strong demand for skilled labour on building sites and many of our clients are reporting full order books. “The housing market is booming due to the stamp duty holiday and government is committed to infrastructure spending across the UK.”

Hudson delivers the most accurate indication of subcontractor pay trends across the construction industry, publishing the average pay for a spectrum of 17 different trades split across 10 regions in England and Wales. It supplies statistics to the Bank of England to keep policymakers updated with real-time insights on demand for skilled labour.

Hudson’s monthly figures offer a valuable insight into pay trends in the £90bn construction industry, which accounts for 6.7 per cent of the UK economy and supports 2.9m jobs.

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