RSTA looks to minimise future skills crisis

20/08/2013
Highways Reporters

The Road Surface Treatments Association (RSTA) has developed an active training programme specific to the road surface sector.

The launch of the programme comes on the back of a warning from the CITB that the UK construction industry is facing a skills crisis resulting from 450,000 people retiring from it within the next five to 10 years.

Recognising the future impact of an ageing workforce coupled with the scaling down of in-house training by local authorities, the RSTA has invested in and developed a training programme specific to the road surface sector.

The programme offers particular training in surface dressing, slurry surfacing, high friction surfacing and carbon foot-printing. A series of Toolbox seminars showcases all of theavailable road surface treatments. All the CPD training courses are linked to Sector Scheme 13 for the Supply and Applications of Surface Treatments and, as a trade association, RSTA is able to access CITB grants to deliver training for operatives at NVQ level 2. These courses are being further developed to NVQ level 3 for supervisors.

In all, RSTA trains over 500 people a year from operative to contracts manager level via a range of bespoke and standard in-house courses.

“Like the construction industry as a whole, the road surface sector workforce includes many nearing retirement. It is, therefore, imperative that the skills of the workforce are not just developed but also replenished,” says Howard Robinson, RSTA chief executive. “This not only counteracts the potential skills gap as people retire but it also, by demonstrating the potential for career development, makes the sector more attractive to new recruits.”

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