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Mental Health and current work realities for tradespeople

by | 04/11/2021

Consumer demand for home improvements has sky-rocketed since the pandemic. Our latest report, published in November 2021, seeks to quantify the extent to which tradespeople are struggling to meet these unprecedented levels of household demand. Access the report directly here.

Survey findings

Some of our main findings with both homeowners and installers include:

  • Our research shows that homeowners have been particularly interested in spending their disposable income on the garden, living spaces and kitchens/ bathrooms.
  • During the past year, 4 in 5 homeowners have confirmed to us that they have spent money on improving their home in some way.
  • Tradespeople operating in the domestic improvement space are struggling to keep up with these unprecedented levels of demand. Problems with the supply chain, freight and finding the right people to work with all weigh heavily on the mind of the installer. Current frictions and structural changes in the system mean that plumbers and installers report only being able to operate at a 58% level of efficiency on average.

Not only does this mean that the home improvement sector is not fully benefitting from the levels of sales that it could be, but for those tradespeople who are still ‘chasing the buck’ our results also highlight the relatively high impact on the mental health of those working at the coal face.

Mental health issues in construction

Our data also highlight some sobering findings around the extent of mental health issues amongst tradespeople who often work alone or in very small businesses where support is perhaps not high on the agenda.

  • We estimate that around 75,000 trade businesses are currently impacted by a potential mental health issue
  • 7 in 10 tradespeople say that there is still a stigma towards seeking help for mental health amongst those working in the sector

We also take the opportunity to make some recommendations on how the sector more generally could support the installers working at the ‘coalface’. For instance, we believe that manufacturer brands and representative bodies could work further together to enable more peer-to-peer networks for trades.

These support networks should be carefully designed in a way that are appropriate and authentic for the target demographic.

This work is our contribution to the growing spotlight being placed on the issue in the construction sector more broadly. For instance, the Chartered Institute of Building (COIB) commissioned a much wider study across the construction sector, which involved interviews with over 2,000 professionals working across the broader sector.

How do I see the full results?

Based on 370 interviews with tradespeope working primarily in the plumbing, heating and bathroom sector, our exclusive report has now been published. You can download our completely free report here!

Eureka! Research

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