The thing is, you can't construct an omelette without apprenticing a few eggs. Okay - not a great metaphor, but there's a point to it. The demand for skilled construction workers is soaring, but we're basically running out of them. According to UCATT, the construction union, we need about 45,000 new workers per year. In 2013/14, only around 8,000 people even completed apprenticeships! It's basically becoming a skills crisis.

UCATT's working hard to fix the problem, and to help people make the most of the booming construction industry. They're pushing for more funding for apprenticeships and better pay for people in the schemes. They're also calling for people to get a fairer deal working directly for an employer. They're even hoping to make apprenticeships compulsory for public sector contracts.

At the end of the day, it's about getting more skilled construction workers into better-paying jobs.

Get A Foot on the Ladder With Construction Apprenticeships

Apprenticeships are a really good option for getting a foot on the construction ladder, and they're getting better all the time. Over the next five years, we're looking at another 232,000 new jobs popping up in the construction trade. There's enormous pressure on employers to fill these vacancies, and apprenticeships are an ideal way to do it. Certainly, some people who've left the industry are being attracted back to it. It's going to take more than that, though. For one thing, one in five people in the trade is set to retire in the next ten years!

Construction needs new, highly skilled workers, and that means we need more apprenticeships. It's vital for the industry's future, and it's a good deal for workers.

Doing a Level -2 apprenticeship means you'll earn about ÂŁ73,000 more in your life, and basically guarantees you a job. In fact, three quarters of apprentices stay on with the firm that trained them for at least five years. You get valuable practical skills, gained out in the real world - and you get paid to learn them!

It's not easy, and it's not as well paid as it could be - but things are changing. With the construction industry's future on the rise, taking on an apprenticeship is a smart move.

You're laying your foundations now, but the sky's the limit tomorrow.

RIFT has been working to help people in construction since 1999. See what we can do for you whether you're PAYE or CIS.