Weekly News Bulletin – 29th March 2018

This week we reported that builders’ merchants kicked off 2018 positively with an increase in sales for all product categories in comparison to January 2017. This follows on from the Builders Merchant Federation (BMF) previously predicting a positive year for 2018 and beyond. Do you agree with this optimistic outlook? We’d love to hear your thoughts.

Following on from National Apprenticeship Week at the beginning of March, we shared news on the importance of continuing to promote apprenticeships throughout the year to futureproof your business. The story argued that this will ensure the next generation of industry professionals are inspired to learn more about available opportunities and provide a solution to the skills shortage. We believe apprentices are crucial to a business as they bring a fresh perspective and give companies a competitive edge, and that’s why our apprenticeship scheme takes on new talent each year.

Apprenticeships are a hot topic at present and this week we also shared news from The Telegraph on the apprenticeship levy and how it is currently performing since it was launched last year. The Government has set a target of 3 million people to start apprenticeships by 2020, but many companies aren’t as optimistic, with smaller companies finding it difficult to adhere to the stringent guidelines involved. What’s your thoughts on the apprenticeship levy?

There was also some exciting news from Engineering.com on the use of drones in construction projects. The Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) has brought about a wave of opportunities across many industries as technological developments show no signs of slowing down. As a result, drones can now be used to help make construction projects more efficient as they monitor site progress and track material quantities. They can also be used alongside BIM software to help with site modelling at the design stage. Metsec is a strong advocate of BIM and welcomes technological advancements, such as the use of drones, that can further support the industry.

Finally, although we saw news from CITY A.M reporting a dip in confidence among British manufacturers with sentiment hitting its lowest point since the Brexit aftermath, it still remains above the long-term average since 1990. Watch this space as we’ll keep you updated as the year progresses.

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Good news for builders’ merchants as turnover lifted #MetsecDaily @TCIndex

Price inflation lifts builders’ merchants’ turnover
Builders merchants saw an 8.4% increase in sales in January, compared to January 2017, lifted by one additional trading day.


Check out this piece on the importance of apprenticeships #MetsecDaily @FENews

National Apprenticeship Week is important, but we need to keep the conversation going all year round
Anyone working in education and careers will know that we just celebrated National Apprenticeship Week 2018, five days of information and inspiration hoping to encourage a new generation of young people to learn more about the great opportunities out there.


Find out more about how the apprenticeship levy is performing #MetsecDaily @Telegraph

Apprentice levy under pressure with fresh fall in sign-ups expected
Moves to boost Britain’s apprenticeships system are set to suffer another heavy blow this week, with the number of people signing up for the training programmes expected show a further plunge.


Industries across the UK are embracing new technological developments – find out about how #drones can play a major part in construction #MetsecDaily @engineeringcom

Are Drones Becoming Essential to Construction?
The overwhelming majority ($70 billion) of UAVs will still be used for making war, with consumer usage capturing another $17 billion, and the rest taken by industrial applications. Of that $17 billion, construction will represent the lion’s share with $11.2 billion.


Survey reveals dip in confidence from British manufacturers #MetsecDaily @CityAM

British manufacturers and services both see waning reasons to be cheerful
British firms’ confidence fell back in March, with manufacturer sentiment hitting its lowest point since the aftermath of the Brexit vote, according to a long-running survey from the European Commission.