Construction Enquirer News Hudson Contract predicts ‘business as usual’ through lockdown

The industry’s biggest payroll company is forecasting a steady rise in employment for the industry as demand for workers continues to rise.

Hudson Contract said it made 146,700 payments to freelance tradespeople in October, an increase of nearly 7% on September.

The firm is predicting  “business as usual” for the majority of its clients during the second national lockdown.

It forecast of demand for self-employed workers comes after a survey by the Construction Leadership Council predicted specialist contractors were preparing to cut their self-employed workforce in the run up to Christmas.

Ian Anfield, managing director of Hudson, said: “Our clients are telling us they have full order books and that demand for skilled trades continues to outstrip supply.

“Despite doom and gloom predictions from the Construction Leadership Council, our clients say it will be business as usual up to Christmas in spite of the new lockdown.

He added: “Some clients report the extension of the self-employed support scheme could encourage people to stay at home, but that the vast majority of tradespeople are working and don’t want to be sitting at home on support schemes.


“There is plenty of work around. The Government has committed to a lot of infrastructure spending and new projects are being announced every day.

“Measures such as Help to Buy, the stamp duty holiday and relaxed planning laws are supporting a buoyant housebuilding sector.

Hudson said that rising activity had lifted average month on month earnings by 1.7 per cent to £890 per week.

The best-performing regions for earnings growth last month were the East Midlands (up 8.9%), the East of England (up 4%) and the North East (up 1.1%).

Anfield said looking ahead, the outlook for early 2021 was less certain.

“The end of free movement will cause disruption but countering that is reduced demand in January and February.

Construction could struggle as stimulus packages like help to buy and the stamp duty holiday come to an end around March/April.”

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