Current & Future Housing Sector Needs
The social housing sector is currently undergoing tremendous changes some of which has been reflected below.
Critical Skills & Staffing Shortage
There currently exists a critical skills & staffing shortage within the housing sector, which is projected (Asset Skills - Skills Council for Housing) to become more acute over the next decade. Large projects such as the 2012 Olympic Games, Thames Gateway, and other big regeneration projects in the South East, coupled with an existing high staff turnover in the sector, consistent change & flux with expansion and mergers of RSL's, and the need to replace at least 40% of the workforce over the next 10 years will result in housing professionals being very much in demand.
46,000 New Jobs
Asset Skills is the leading research, skills, training, and policy institute within the housing sector. Asset Skills predicts the creation of 46,000 new jobs within the expanding housing sector in the next 10 years. This is evident and highly visible from the large scale re-development of large parts on inner London, some of which forms the core areas of Gravitas Training operations in Tower Hamlets, Hackney, Newham, where a significant portion of the jobs will be located.
40% of Staff will leave the Housing Sector in the Next 10 Years
Research completed by Asset Skills and the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH) projects that 40% of existing staff within social housing will leave to pursue alternative careers paths, and or retire in the next 10 years. This will leave a significant gap and knowledge drain in the housing sector job market, coupled with the creation of a significant number of new jobs.
Mixed, representative workforce
A mixed and representative workforce is required within the housing sector as identified by a recent sector wide survey and study completed by QHS. Underrepresented groups such as young, mature, disabled, new & existing BME groups including BME women are all attractive potential applicants to the housing sector, helping fulfil regulatory requirements and good/best practice.
Significant Change & Flux in the Housing Sector
The social housing world is currently undergoing tremendous change, with numerous mergers, stock transfers and subsequent restructures. Skills, experience, and recruitment shortages caused by continuous change and flux, is resulting in more people leaving or moving around, which can be quantified by the 34% staff turnover in the sector which is very high, and indicative of the key skills and experience being drained from the sector. This is an opportune time to start thinking about moving into a profession where there are fresh opportunities, with the employee in demand, salaries rising, and good career progression prospects within a very favourable market for the housing professional.
Foreign Labour Markets
There is an emerging approach toward foreign labour markets & over seas students by large RSL's (Genesis & Hyde HA) to fill the critical skills and recruitment shortage in the housing sector. The Gravitas Training overseas student programme/academy is currently seeking approval and observing the relevant compliance with the Home Office, to secure student visas and work permits for the host countries. This will be done in conjunction and with the full support of regulatory and professional bodies within social housing, and help open up many opportunities for the overseas students.