Construction and Civil Engineering Task Group

Construction is a significant industry in East Sussex. With many small businesses and sole traders, jobs are 46% above the national average for the working population.

The Construction Task Group meets to support the strategic priorities of Skills East Sussex concerning the industry.  Civil Engineering is also represented in this group.

The group includes  local employers such as:

  • GM Monk
  • Cheesmur Building Contractors Ltd
  • OHM Energy
  • Hawes Building Contractors

Other members include national construction employers, especially when they have building contracts in East Sussex, such as

  • Morgan Sindall
  • Jacobs
  • Wilmott Dixon
  • Volker Fitzpatrick

Organisations whose work include major building also sit on the group. These include:

  • East Sussex Highways
  • Gatwick Airpot
  • Optivo.

Education and training representatives include:

  • East Sussex College Group
  • Construction Industry Training Board (CITB)
  • University of Brighton
  • employment and skills departments of the local authorities.

The task group is chaired by Scott Monk of GM Monk Ltd, an electrical contractor company.

Careers Hub Case Study Scott Monk
Chair Scott Monk

Chair Scott Monk, Director of GM Monk Ltd

Chairing the Construction task group allows Scott to use his knowledge and expertise from the education, construction and careers sector. He directs the group towards some of the key objectives that East Sussex County Council have set in relation to employment, education and the construction industry. He chairs a very positive and engaged group of people which allows the Task Group to tackle some of the limiting factors in construction.

Task group update Spring/Summer 2023

The task group continues to build upon the foundations it has established.  

Priority tasks for 2022-23 are

  • Supporting a campaign to support the tutor bursary to help get more people with recent industry experience into the classroom
  • Supporting the creation of an employer designed event focussed on continuing professional development (CPD)
  • Supporting employers to promote the progression opportunities of the sector
  • Supporting employers to recruit through access to CiTB grants, advice through Transform and work with the DWP

For 2023-24, a key aim will be

  • Establishing a risk register of Green Skills availability in support of moves to Net Zero in 2030.

Construction has been a key beneficiary of the Transform programme which helps SMEs to take on apprentices. 30% of Transform participants in East Sussex have been in Construction. 30% of levy transfer has also gone to Construction firms.

A major achievement for the group is work on a day of practical demonstrations about the latest technology and methods in the sector. This CPD (Continuing Professional Development) event for tutors and lecturers in July 2023 will see employers, tutors and careers advisers meet and learn from one another. 

Check the Careers East Sussex local industry pages to learn more about the sector and job roles in it. 

Two job role videos were created last year which we thank Willmott Dixon and Jacobs for.

Construction Task Group meetings

Please find below the minutes of recent task group meetings.

Minutes are not available for publication until approved by the group members a the following meeting. Therefore minutes for August will not appear until after the meeting in November.

The next meeting of the group is on 2 August 2023. 

Contact Skills East Sussex  if you are a sector employer, training or education provider and want details. Other than your time, and occasional travel, there are no costs to joining Skills East Sussex meetings.  

If you wish to see minutes of a meeting not listed, please please email Skills East Sussex and we will do our best to help.

Task group achievements to date

  • Endorsement of a University of Brighton bid. The bid secured £100K for development of degree level construction apprenticeships.
  • Endorsement of an East Sussex College bid to the Construction Industry Training Board. The bid was for a mobile Construction Hub to enable more flexible training and delivery.
  • Input into the curriculum, including the new T-Levels at East Sussex College Group (ESCG).
  • Key work with Sussex Council of Training Providers (SCTP) to support engagement between business and education. This informed co-design of the curriculum and recruitment of tutors from industry
  • Representing the construction sector at the first East Sussex Apprenticeship Graduation ceremony in 2019.
  • Supporting the Primary and Secondary Careers Hubs through the Enterprise Adviser Network, Industry Champions and Open Doors workplace visit programme. Read more about the Careers Hub
  • An example of activity is the Sector-based Work Academy Programme (SWAP) ‘Building Lives’ run by Willmott Dixon. It ran from 16 November to 11 December 2020 and took a cohort of 10 due to social distancing restrictions.

    Forty-eight referrals came through Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). Nine out of ten completed the SWAP.  Participants gained a Level 1 Carpentry qualification, Level 1 Health and Safety qualification, employability skills training and a Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) card. At the end of the 4-week course, all participants had an interview with Willmott Dixon and Falcon Green. Three individuals started jobs, and 4 others were still in touch with the recruitment agency.