Despite an increase in the number of students enrolling in property and construction courses in recent years, a new report predicts that graduate output will be insufficient to meet future demand and that Ireland is set to experience a shortage of over 2,000 construction and property surveyors over the next four years.
The report, Employment Opportunities and Future Skills Requirements for Surveying Professions 2018 – 2021 predicts that 3,739 additional surveying positions will be created over that period. However, the number of students graduating from property and construction related degree programmes over the same period will only number 1,577, a shortfall of 2,162.
The author of the report Dr Róisín Murphy from Dublin Institute of Technology, says the situation is so serious that the lack of supply of suitably qualified surveying professionals is now the primary constraint to employment growth.
Speaking this week, Dr Murphy said, "The shortage of suitably qualified surveyors is likely to continue to put upward pressure on wage levels and ultimately on building costs. The other main constraints on growth cited by respondents were clients’ access to finance, the cost of finance, taxation and Brexit."
The SCSI’s Director of Education James Lonergan described the findings as alarming and said they underlined the urgent need for a dramatic increase in the number of Chartered Surveyors to build, sell and manage the new homes, offices, health, transport and education facilities the country so badly needs following years of under-investment.
According to Lonergan, "If we are to produce more graduates we will need more property and construction courses and hence we will require more investment in third level education. For example at the moment only one third level institution provides an SCSI accredited Building Surveying Programme. We also need to promote the profession more, to facilitate collaboration between the industry, the SCSI and the education sector while also encouraging experienced surveyors to return to Ireland."