The construction industry should use recessions to train staff to gain a competitive edge when work volumes increase, says cement and concrete technical services provider The Concrete Institute’s School of Concrete Technology senior lecturer John Roxburgh.
“It is crucial to have competent people on construction sites and the money spent on training will be repaid tenfold.”
He tells Engineering News that concrete is extensively used in all civil and construction projects and sound concrete technology knowledge is important. Having trained staff who are competent in all relevant aspects of concrete practice will result in contracts being carried out more economically and quicker, with fewer costly site errors and repairs.
“When concreting goes wrong, time and money are wasted but, in so many cases, this could be avoided by having the correct expertise on site.”
The School of Concrete Technology is positioned to provide the relevant education to meet the needs of concrete practitioners on site.
Roxburgh recommends that contractors should identify suitable people in the organisation and “champion” them to become concrete specialists, adding that a competent “concrete person” will go a long way in preventing mistakes and training other employees.
Further, he mentions that a training provider’s experience in providing up-to-date and relevant concrete technology education should be considered before selecting one.
The School of Concrete Technology’s consulting division is involved in the writing of standards, publications and the assessment of the latest technologies. Further, the certificates that the school issues are well recognised in the industry.
Its 2019 education programme will offer 16 courses, developed to meet the needs of the concrete and concrete-related industries.
The Advanced Concrete Technology diploma course will be presented in the first half of next year and again in 2021. According to Roxburgh, the course is globally recognised as the leading qualification in concrete technology and examined by the UK-based Institute of Concrete Technology.
The Concrete Institute – which the school forms part of – offers researchers and students an up-to-date and growing library, with more than 130 000 publications, he concludes.