The UK construction and house building industries have long been associated with resilience, strength, and innovation. However, these are also industries that have struggled with gender diversity, as only 15% of the 2.15 million construction workers currently registered as working in the UK are women. This is according to the Office for National Statistics figures released in November 2022.
In this article, we look into women in the UK construction and house building sectors, examining the challenges they face, the progress made, and the crucial role they play in shaping the industry’s future.
Women in UK Construction Industries
Despite significant progress in recent years, gender disparity persists across various roles within the industry. While the number of women in these industries has increased, achieving true gender equality still requires substantial effort.
Challenges Faced by Women in the industry
There are a number of factors that contribute to the underrepresentation of women in the construction and house building industry. Some of the key challenges faced by female professionals include:
- Stereotypes and Prejudice: Traditional stereotypes often show construction as a male-dominated field, leading to prejudice and bias against women.
- Lack of Awareness: Limited awareness to construction-related career opportunities during education can deter women from a career in this sector.
- Workplace Culture: The culture may not be welcoming to women, making it difficult for them to progress their careers.
- Work-Life Balance: The demands of construction work can clash with family responsibilities, making it challenging for women to balance their personal and professional lives.
- Safety Concerns: Safety concerns at construction sites can be a deterrent for women, as some may perceive the industry as inherently risky.
How we’re breaking barriers and encouraging Change
Despite the challenges, there have been several initiatives and efforts to promote gender diversity in the UK construction industry. Nuneaton Roof Truss actively contributes to breaking down barriers and fostering an inclusive environment by:
- Awareness & Education: We challenge traditional stereotypes by highlighting the remarkable achievements of women in our organisation.
- Mentoring Programs: We foster an inclusive workplace culture, providing guidance and support for women throughout their construction careers.
- Equal Opportunities: We promote equal opportunities for career growth, training, and development for both male and female employees.
- Promoting Work-Life Balance: Our policies ensure all our staff can balance their personal and professional lives effectively.
- Safety Measures: We are committed to continuously improving safety measures, creating a secure work environment for all employees.
Success Stories: Celebrating Women in Construction
Highlighting success stories of women who have made significant contributions can serve as inspiration for aspiring female professionals. Recognising and celebrating these achievements can help break stereotypes and encourage more women to join the sector. Our recent article on Sarah Ely is one such story.
The Positive Impact of Women in Construction
Women bring unique perspectives, skills, and ideas to the house building and construction industry. Their inclusion can lead to increased creativity, improved problem-solving, and enhanced collaboration among teams. Diverse construction teams actively drive innovation, boost productivity, and create a competitive advantage in the marketplace.
The UK construction industry is progressing in gender diversity, emphasising women’s importance, fostering inclusivity, and empowering them.
Recognising the importance of women in the house building and construction industries along with creating a supportive and inclusive environment for them is crucial to drive the industry forward.
It is our responsibility to actively promote diversity, break down barriers, and empower women in the UK construction sector. Nuneaton Roof Truss is dedicated to an inclusive workplace and actively supports diversity and women in construction.