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Confidence crisis reported among Scottish construction firms

Confidence crisis reported among Scottish construction firms

There has been a slight dip in confidence among Scottish construction firms, a new report reveals.According to the latest edition of the Scottish Construction Monitor, building businesses in the country are facing challenges due to skills shortages and a lack of available labour, leaving them struggling to complete contracts to the best of their ability.More than 60 firms took part in the survey in total, awarding the Scottish construction industry a positive confidence rating for the tenth consecutive quarter. For the final quarter of 2015, the sector received a score of +8, down from the previous three-month period's rating of +22. This takes overall confidence in the sector to its lowest level for two years, highlighting the extent of the ongoing skills shortage's effects and other problems in the industry.For instance, construction firms held varying views on the performance of planning and building authorities in Scotland. Although the majority were satisfied with them, almost one-quarter (24 per cent) of respondents were not, which may have affected the monitor's overall confidence rating for the past three months.Other concerns regarded rogue traders operating in the industry, taking business away from genuine firms, while there was also an ongoing air of dissatisfaction towards procurement in the sector.Vaughan Hart, managing director of the SBF, commented: "This latest confidence rating underlines continued concerns amongst employers about the long-term sustainability of the revival in industry performance we are currently witnessing."As we have highlighted before, there are continuing concerns about the unbalanced performance of the industry at the current time and that, throughout 2015, industry employment rates have continued to lag significantly behind record levels of output."Earlier this year, the monitor recorded a record-high rating of +35, so with the Scottish Parliament elections set to take place next year, all eyes will be on the industry to see how confidence levels change over the coming months.Image: Thinkstock/iStock 

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