A recent survey conducted by the Brazilian Confederation of Industry (CNI) demonstrated that in the last quarter of 2010, 68.4% of 375 company heads in the real estate development sector thought the country still lacked enough skilled workers.
A statistic which has seen a gradual increase from 64% in quarter 3 and 62% in quarter 2 of 2010 is bringing concerns with regards to dealing with a vital component of an industry viewed as a lynchpin of the country’s economic growth.
Most professionals are pointing to a general attitude by most people that a job on a building site is really a stop gap. According to Melvin Fox, president of the Brazilian Association of the Construction Industry and Materials: "Many people see working in the sector as a temporary solution whilst they can find something with, usually speaking, better pay and working conditions." Whilst some strategies to counteract the issues have been implemented, including large-scale investments in professional qualification and related initiatives, their presence remains low in relation to the current growth levels of construction activity in Brazil.
In the organisation’s 2010/11 annual report, Edward Zaidan, economic director at the Civil Construction Industry Union of São Paulo State (Sinduscon-SP) stated: "Contrary to what the government believes, it is not the sole responsibility of the construction industry to develop such training programmes; there is a clear need for greater national policy to support this sector." His comments are supported by Danilo Garcia, industrial policy analyst at the CNI in an interview with the magazine Conjuntura Econômica in December 2010: "A rationally focused construction labour training programme is needed in addition to incentives for companies to enable to develop the skills and abilities of their building site staff."