Last Thursday, March 8th, people across the globe celebrated International Women’s Day, a day to recognise and celebrate the achievements of women. It was also the day that the Federation of Master Builders (FMB) aptly released their latest research that highlights that a third of UK home owners would feel more positive about hiring a female builder or tradesperson to work on their home, as opposed to a male builder or tradesperson.
35% of women in particular felt particularly positive about hiring female builders or tradespersons to complete a task in their homes. Of those who felt more positive about hiring a female builder, the reasons were as follows:
51% think female tradespeople might be more respectful of their home
46% would like to support more women working in non-traditional job roles
42% might feel more at ease with a female tradesperson
37% think female tradespeople might be more trustworthy
35% think female tradespeople might be friendlier
30% think women often have better attention to detail than men
20% prefer the company of women
18% relate better to other women
16% think it would be a novelty and a welcome change to hire a female builder
The survey also revealed that nearly two thirds of the general public are not bothered whether the builder or tradesperson doing work for them were a man or a woman.
Commenting on the report Brain Berry, Chief Executive of the FMB said “There’s a clear appetite among consumers for more women to enter the building industry with one third of home owners saying they would rather hire a female builder. There are numerous reasons for this and chief among them is that these home owners feel that female tradespeople might be more respectful of their home.” He also pointed out that “Consumers are also keen to support more women working in non-traditional job roles, which is a breath of fresh air. However, there’s a serious gap in the market here as currently only 2% of tradespeople are women.”
Berry concluded by calling on all parents, teachers and career advisers to discuss a career in construction with young woman and promote the benefits of a career that offers not being stuck behind a desk all day. Referencing that the construction industry is in the midst of a serious skills shortage and whilst perception of a woman’s role in the construction industry is changing, it is not quick enough as despite feeling positive about hiring female builders and tradespersons, 30% fewer people would encourage their daughter to pursue a career in construction than their sons, which is discouraging and clearly requires tackling further.