CITB funds used to train house sales teams

Grant Prior 8 years ago
Share

Construction firms are raising more questions about where CITB funds go.

The training body decided not to pump extra money into training charity Building Lives which will close this month.

The decision has raised questions over the latest round of discretionary funding which saw millions handed out to trade associations.

Among the grants was a £20,000 cheque to the Home Builders Federation to train “non-construction workers” like sales and marketing staff.

A total of 21 organisations were given £7.5m in the last round of funding outside the standard training levy.

Trade associations managed to snaffle more than half the cash.

The funding decisions have come under fire from CITB critics including payroll firm Hudson Contracts.

Director Ian Anfield said: “Neither the Industrial Training Act nor the 2015 Levy Order set the criteria for who is eligible for CITB grants.

“Instead it is up to the CITB and the large industry representatives that dominate its board and committees. This provides little opportunity for accountability and scrutiny of the process, and a number of worthwhile projects have gone unfunded as a result.

“On the face of it, Building Lives looks like it could be one of these projects, but this issue highlights a wider problem with the CITB.

“The CITB is granted levy raising powers only because it is able to convince government that it has industry support.

“This so-called industry support derives from an out-dated consultation process that gives disproportionate power to a number of large firms and federations who are invited by the CITB to represent the industry.

“The CITB should  be dragged into the 21st century and embrace open, digital consultation techniques to allow everyone to participate in this process, whether they are a multinational firm or a self-employed tradesman.

“The construction industry is resilient and adaptable precisely because of the number of freelancers and SMEs working in it, but with the CITB their voices are not heard over those who can shout the loudest.

“SMEs and the self-employed pay a disproportionate amount of levy, and are frustrated by the hoops they have to jump through if they wish to claim back training grants.

“We are concerned with the recent funding allocations trumpeted by the CITB. They represent £7.6m from the CITB’s £60m flexible a fund.

“It will be giving large chunks of levy-payer’s money to unaccountable federations who don’t make any contribution to the levy themselves.

“These organizations should be self-funding based on the fees of those who chose to join them, rather than syphoning off levy-payer’s money that could be used to fund worthwhile training.

“If the CITB is genuinely committed to hearing the views of the industry, and they are confident that they have industry support, we invite them to listen to the tens of thousands of SMEs and hundreds of thousands of self-employed people who pay their levy and end up also paying for their own training.

“We want to see the CITB go back to basics and focus on providing training for all, from the self-employed upwards. Like the new Apprenticeship Levy, the CITB levy should be used to fund the actual cost of training and nothing else.

Steve Radley, Director of Policy at CITB, said: “Building Lives’ recent funding application unfortunately did not meet our funding criteria, which were agreed with industry last year.

“These criteria are important because they ensure we are investing levy-payers’ money where it is most needed, with the best chance of success.

“The key elements we were looking for are projects which are employer-led, based on evidenced need, and which cannot be funded elsewhere.

“We take a one-to-many approach when making funding decisions, to ensure that the impact of the funding is felt throughout the industry.

“While some projects that receive funding from CITB are led by Federations, many consist of employer-led consortiums.

“Through HBF, we have supported the development of non-site skills, which are in strong demand for homebuilders.”

Latest news

Aluminium cladding specialist collapses

Melton Mowbray-based firm worked for several main contractors
5 hours ago

Brickwork contractor Lee Marley returns to profit

Affordable and rental homes demand lifts brickwork contractor
5 hours ago

Housing contractor Durkan suffers second year of losses

More fire safety provisions tip firm into £3.9m loss
6 hours ago

Farrans makes breakthrough on tricky tunnel job

Tunnel under Tees latest part of new £155m water pipeline job
6 hours ago

Heidelberg buys aggregates and earthworks specialist B&A

Latest deal follows acquisition of Mick George
6 hours ago

Flagship biodiversity net gain scheme flawed

NAO warns Government's flagship green development scheme at risk of failure
3 days ago

Plan in for £3bn Lincolnshire mega data centre

3.3m sq ft Humber Tech Park will be one of Europe's largest data centres
3 days ago

Green light for Digbeth 1,300 homes scheme

Warner’s Fields scheme to start with excavation and landscaping of the River Rea
3 days ago

£210m M3 Junction 9 upgrade gains consent

VolkerFitzpatrick to start work in early 2025 on Winnall roundabout, near Winchester
3 days ago

United Living wins 14-year L&Q homes repairs deal

Trafford housing upkeep deal worth £205m
3 days ago

£400m Lewisham resi-led scheme advances

Land deal paves way for Amro Partners' 1,000-home London scheme
3 days ago

McLaren gets go-ahead for Grade II listed Leeds student scheme

Springfield House to be revamped and two new wings added
3 days ago

Piling giant to fit people alarms on all rigs

Cementation Skanska upgrades site safety systems
3 days ago

Vistry to make £800m profit after subcontractor cost cuts

House builder bullish about shareholder returns after asking suppliers for discounts
4 days ago

Shareholders approve £2.5bn Barratt and Redrow merger

Final hurdle is for the competition regulator to approve the deal.
4 days ago

Green light for £80m Leith waterfront revamp

Build-to-rent homes and student accommodation scheme to be built
4 days ago

Tilbury Douglas clears Interserve legacy jobs to return to profit

Revenue tops £500m in first year as standalone contractor
5 days ago

Land deal paves way for Manchester civil service office hub

Government buys five acres at former Central Retail Park
4 days ago

Speller Metcalfe wins Wolverhampton library upgrade

Full works are due to start in the autumn
4 days ago

Skills shortage puts big infrastructure projects at risk

Government failing as an intelligent client and now over-reliant on consultancies
5 days ago

Contractors face further insulation board price hikes

Cost of PIR insulation boards set to rise another 10%
5 days ago

Henry Boot wins £36m Rotherham Markets job

Project involves upgrading existing market and building a new library
5 days ago

Keltbray hires new head of infrastructure procurement

Lukasz Olszewski will oversee rail, energy and highways business units
5 days ago

Tunnel fit out robot to revolutionise civils work

Costain and VVB Engineering part of innovative consortium
5 days ago

Funding deal for £86m wind turbine test centre

Latest investment at National Renewable Energy Centre in Blyth
6 days ago

Plan in for Manchester ‘upside-down’ 18-storey tower

Landmark cantilevered NXQ building plan for city Northern Quarter
6 days ago

London 25km Super Sewer hooked up for commissioning

Tideway completes connection to existing Lee Tunnel sewer system
6 days ago

£200m Lincoln ring-road approved

North Hykeham Relief Road granted planning permission
6 days ago

£1bn Manchester Airport City plan rebooted as new sci-tech hub

Plan pivots from offices to science and manufacturing campus, called MIX Manchester
1 week ago

Record results at maintenance specialist Renew

Infrastructure maintenance work continues to pay off for contractor
6 days ago

Contractor services