Fighting for a Fairer CITB

Fighting for a Fairer CITB

22nd February 2017 | Hudson Contract

The CITB needs urgent reform. Its own accounts show that most grants go to large businesses.  That’s because they have the staff to do the endless paperwork required. Most of our clients don’t have that luxury, yet they still train their workforce at their own expense.

If this sounds like you, we’re here to help.

Everyone – even the CITB itself – agrees that reform is necessary.  So does the government.  Construction relies on medium, small and micro-sized businesses, and we think it’s high time things changed for the better for the firms.

There are two opportunities to get the change you want.  One is the government consultation, which is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to have your say.  The other is the CITB’s ‘consultation process’.  These are two different things and both are important.

The Government Consultation

The government is consulting on how the construction industry can best attract and train people. It wants to hear from businesses large and small, up and down the country.  This is the first time since 1982 that the government has looked into this in detail. 

So if you care about these issues, it is vital that you take part in the government’s consultation. This is the chance of a lifetime to change the system, ensure fair provision of training, and end the CITB’s ridiculous money-go-round of taking from the small to give to the large.

The consultation looks at a number of different issues, spread over 9 questions. The types of things they want to know are:

  • Whether we need to have a levy and grant scheme and whether it changes your approach to training
  • Whether the levy and grant system has any skills shortages, if they exist
  • Whether the CITB brings value to the sector and, if so, what it is
  • Whether or not the grants are easy to access
  • What leadership role the CITB plays currently and what is needed
  • Whether or not the CITB's current activities help produce site-ready new entrants

We know that your time to fill in forms is limited, but this will be a lot simpler and quicker than applying for a CITB grant.  If you would like any advice on filling out the consultation, please email Ian Anfield.

The CITB’s ‘Consultation Process’

Every three years, the CITB must ask the government to approve its collecting a levy.  The Secretary of State for Education, the Rt Hon. Justine Greening MP, will decide this year whether or not the CITB can collect a levy in 2018. As part of this process, the CITB must prove that it has the support of the industry.

The CITB is about to begin its process for proving that such support exists.  The CITB largely avoids direct engagement with firms, but there are still several ways in which you can have your say.

  • Thirteen pre-selected ‘consensus federations’ decide whether or not to offer support on behalf of their membership.  However, there is no obligation on them to check what their members actually think.  So, if you are a paying member of one of them, we suggest you get in touch with the Chief Executive and tell them what you want the federation to say on your behalf. You can find a list of them below. If you don’t know how to contact them, email Ian Anfield and he can help.
  • The CITB hosts a number of consultation events around the country. You can sign up and tell them what your think in person here (now closed). 
  • Why not write to the CITB directly and just let them know? Their new acting CEO is Sarah Beale and the address is: CITB, Bircham Newton, Kings Lynn, Norfolk. PE31 6RH.
  • You can write to your local MP. If you don’t know who that is then you can find out here.
  • You can fill in the CITB’s questionnaire here (now closed). We don’t think it’s acceptable that they only ask one question and we will be campaigning for a far more detailed consultation process, but it’s better than nothing!

If you would like to know more information about our work fighting for a better, fairer training system, please contact Ian Anfield, Managing Director of Hudson Contract

Useful Information

Read the independent research on training that we commissioned

Consensus Federations

  • Build UK
  • BWF - British Woodworking Federation
  • CECA - Civil Engineering Contractors Association
  • CPA - Construction Plant-hire Association
  • FMB - Federation of Master Builders
  • HAE - Hire Association Europe
  • HBF - Home Builders Federation
  • NAS - National Association of Shopfitters
  • NFB - National Federation of Builders
  • NFDC - National Federation of Demolition Contractors
  • SBF - Scottish Building Federation
  • SDF - Scottish Decorators Federation
  • SPOA - Scottish Plant Owners Association
Tags: Legislation