Despite the high levels of unemployment observed in the EU, in several Member States construction companies are confronted with difficulties in finding the right workers with the right skills.
In 2015 the construction sector in the EU represented 8.5% of the total GDP, more than 14 million workers and 3.2 million companies, the vast majority of them with less than 20 workers. It is also a sector with specific features such as, for example : high mobility of its workforce, changing working conditions (for example in order to take into account whether conditions), difficulty in attracting and retaining young people. Finally, it is a sector which plays a crucial role in “green” policies both at the EU and at the national level, as the built environment is responsible for 40% of all the energy consumption in the EU.
Within this framework the anticipation of skills needs and the adaptation of training schemes are key elements for facing the observed skills gaps.
The SKILLCO project, coordinated by the Chamber of Construction and Building Materials Industry of Slovenia (CCIS CCBMIS), gathers social partners organisations and training providers from Germany, Hungary and Slovenia, as well as FIEC (European Construction Industry Federation), the EU umbrella organisation for employers’ in the construction industry.
The main goals of the project will be to define and identify existing and anticipated skill needs, to elaborate and define learning units, with the use of ECVET principles, that could be integrated in formal VET programmes or used as training courses. The intention is, on the one hand, to integrate the learning unit outcomes that will be elaborated in the framework of the project into the existing sectoral curricula, corresponding the 4th EQF level, and, on the other hand, to include them (where possible, due to the differences in the various education systems and where required with specific adaptations) in the national occupation standards and regular VET programmes. These goals therefore constitute first attempts to elaborate and implement comparable curricula in different countries, with the aim to foster trainees’ and workers’ mobility.