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Shortage of Tradespeople Set to Cost UK £98 Billion in Missed Growth

two workers sawing on a table

Recent findings by Kingfisher showed that a shortage of tradespeople in the United Kingdom could cost the economy £98 billion in missed GDP growth opportunities until 2030.

This data was gathered in response to current shortages of at least 166,000 tradespeople, with the UK on course to face a shortage of at least 250,000 tradespeople by 2030.

The biggest shortages were found more towards electricians, plumbing, heating installers, and carpenters/joiners. With areas such as the West and East Midlands and London regions anticipated to be the most impacted, leading to a reduction in regional GDP growth.



Kingfisher collected their data through 1000 surveys, gathering information from 16-25 year olds who believed that many of the younger generations are missing out on trade careers due to a lack of career advice at schools. Only 13% said they were encouraged at school to consider trade career options, suggesting that a wide range of students are missing out on potential career opportunities. Through these surveys, they also discovered that 61% of children believe they are being put off trade by their parents to focus on more academic studies.

From these findings, 585 tradespeople also spoke about their thoughts, revealing that 9 out of 10 of them would advise a career in trade to young people and that they too, were discouraged by their schools or colleges to consider a career in trade in the beginning.

Gender Gap

This study also discovered that only 2% of women in the UK, out of 900,000 tradespeople are women. If the proportion of female tradespeople were to rise to one-third of the current male count, it could solve the anticipated shortage of tradespeople in the UK by 2030.

Through this gender gap, only 35% of young women have considered a career in trade, compared to 60% of young men. This could be due to an imbalance in advice offered at schools as only 26% of young women stated that they were given the right information about trade careers.

Impacted Projects

Furthermore, an additional study was conducted involving 2000 adults who explained how this shortage is already starting to affect the country. 1 in 5 people reported that they had to put a stop to projects within the past 5 years as there were no suitable tradespeople available for certain projects. This caused a direct impact for many businesses as they were unable to find apprentices.



To help resolve these issues, Screwfix offers an annual Trade Apprentice Competition, where the winner receives a career-boosting prize bundle worth £10,000. They have also helped fund 14 trade apprenticeships, through their partnerships with Trac, transferring parts of its apprenticeship levy. Screwfix continues to work on a campaign that will help connect tradespeople customers with schools and colleges, to further inspire the new generation and ensure that they are able to fully grasp the benefits of a career in trade.

Furthermore, Kingfisher is also proposing measures such as offering strong career advice in schools, hiring incentives to support SMEs in taking on training and apprentices, and offering cost of living support to ensure trade apprenticeships are financially viable for young people.


Here at GLP Training, we offer a tremendous amount of apprenticeship programmes that could benefit your company. Providing different levels of progression and courses that can be specifically tailored to what your company is looking for. Our success comes from a deep understanding of our clients needs and values and knowing the importance of building a solid foundation for professional growth. Help reduce the UK shortages by applying for one of our trade apprenticeships today!

Access information about our current apprenticeships here:


We believe in beyond academic expertise, embracing vocational skills and workplace equality. We value teamwork and seek motivated individuals to join us in shaping our future. Embrace this opportunity to collaborate, learn and grow with us! Be part of a team today!

The UK Needs You!

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