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A new survey of 400 industry professionals has shown that over half (54%) identified lack of skilled workers as the biggest threat facing the plumbing industry. Commissioned by Hep2O, plastic push-fit plumbing manufacturer, the survey also found a further 39% believe the greatest challenge was lack of consumer expenditure in the current economy.
However, despite these challenges it appears the plumbing community remains positive about the prospects for the sector. 42% of plumbers think that the next 12 months are going to be better than last year. Respondents suggested the biggest contributing factor of this is the increase in residential property development (40%) and the advancement of smart technology (26%).
Likewise, many plumbing professionals are still passionate about their industry, with 79% recommending plumbing as a future career.
“It’s no surprise that the skills shortage remains a significant concern in the industry and our survey only reinforces how large scale the problem still is,” comments Karen Stables, Marketing Manager, Wavin Hep2O. “Here at Hep2O, we actively work with key colleges and students to educate them on the benefits the trade as a career path. Collaboration will be key for us an industry to tackle the problem effectively.
“At Hep2O, we know that plumbers want manufacturers to listen more and offer advice and support. That is why we are working closely with industry advocates and the wider plumbing community to understand what matters most to installer and ensure that we, as a business, are best placed to meet their evolving requirements. In fact, our survey showed that 73% of plumbers believe manufacturers could improve their level of communication and offer more support – our research helps to put us at the forefront of delivering on this.”