Greg Johnson, Director at Bootle-based window manufacturer Warwick North West, shares how steps to overcome challenges within the construction industry can lead to the city’s regeneration…
As the government intensifies its focus on mitigating climate change, the construction sector finds itself at the forefront of a transformative shift towards sustainability.
As a result, I’d say the most pressing issue currently facing the industry is the impending implementation of the Future Homes Standard, which proposes the introduction of a new national U-value – or the measure of the rate of heat transfer – of 0.8 by 2025.
The new Standard demands a radical re-evaluation of current construction practices and innovative approaches and investments in energy-efficient technologies to meet these stringent benchmarks.
In order to prepare for the looming Future Homes Standard, we’ve been making several investments over the years to ensure that both we and our customers are protected.
This includes the investment in Modus, a uPVC casement window that can achieve a U-value of 0.7, and is therefore compliant with the Future Homes Standard, and is available to all our customers across the trade, commercial and new build markets.
In the past year, triple glazing has emerged as a promising solution to meet the Future Homes Standard’s stringent requirements, offering enhanced thermal insulation and energy efficiency.
Another significant investment at Warwick has therefore been in our own glass manufacturing unit at our premises in Bootle – having this facility in-house means that we can readily produce triple glazed products, and that our customers can rely on us to meet the strict standards now, rather than waiting for 2025.
Investing in cutting-edge technology and staying ahead of industry trends, we’re ready to embrace the Future Homes Standard, ensuring environmental responsibility and customer satisfaction in the ever-evolving landscape of energy-efficient glazing throughout Liverpool and the whole of the UK.
Building a sustainable workforce
Another major challenge currently facing the construction industry is the growing skills shortage.
As demand for construction projects continues to surge, a widening gap in skilled labour has emerged, delaying project timelines and compromising the overall quality of workmanship.
An ageing workforce and lack of apprenticeships further exacerbate the issue, creating a scenario where the industry is struggling to attract and retain skilled talent.
Recognising the paramount importance of addressing the UK construction industry’s skills shortage, we are actively engaged in a multifaceted approach aimed at not only futureproofing our workforce, but also contributing to the regeneration of Liverpool’s economy.
Through strategic alliances with impactful workforce organisations such as Nobody Left Behind, dedicated to providing industry-specific training to young individuals, and Inside Connections, a community interest company supporting prison leavers and young people at risk of offending, we are fostering a collaborative ecosystem.
This commitment extends beyond mere training initiatives – we are actively working with these partners to fill our current job vacancies, with plans for further job creation in the year ahead.
In doing so, we aim not only to address the industry’s skills gap, but also to play a vital role in the economic regeneration of Liverpool, emphasising our dedication to the sustainable growth of both our workforce and the local community.
Embracing the future
As we navigate challenges such as the impending implementation of the Future Homes Standard and the pressing skills shortage in the construction industry, our investments underscore our readiness to embrace sustainability and innovation.
At Warwick North West, we aim to stand at the forefront, not just as a construction entity, but as a catalyst for positive change and sustainable growth in Liverpool and beyond.