New President of SCSI says shortage of skilled workers will be key challenge over next decade

The new President of the Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland, Enda McGuane has said over 100,000 workers will be needed in the Irish property, land and construction sectors over the next decade including thousands of surveyors. A recent report by the SCSI found that if the economy grows by 4% per annum, there will be a shortage of almost 1,100 chartered surveyors between now and 2026.

Enda McGuane, who is the Asset Management Lead for the Land Development Agency said the shortage of skilled workers across the three sectors is one of the main constraints on the country’s ability to address the housing crisis as well as key infrastructural and commercial developments.

He said enhancing the SCSI’s role in education and exploring how it can improve the built environment’s performance from a sustainability perspective will be key priorities during his term in office. Mr McGuane, who is a chartered fellow of the SCSI with dual status as both a property and facility management surveyor as well as a planning and development surveyor, says inflation and rising interest rates are among the other main challenges facing the country and the construction, property, and land sectors.

Mr McGuane, who is 49 and from West Clare, says it’s important that through its work the surveying profession instils confidence across the three sectors and sends out the message that Ireland is open for business.

“The SCSI has always been a repository of knowledge and a driver of standards in both education and practise and plays an influential role through the production of high-quality cross sector market reports and data-driven analysis. The Society currently encompasses all surveying courses run across a variety of third-level institutes in Ireland. I want to build on those relationships and to grow the number of young people who choose surveying as a career. There are a range of exciting new areas so whether it’s modular construction, operational data analysis or sustainability consultancy, young people should look at what drives them and identify the relevant surveying discipline. From a sustainability perspective, the built environment is a huge contributor to our carbon footprint. We need to devise and implement practices to reduce carbon emissions as a matter of urgency.”

A former officer in the Defence Forces where he took part in deployments to Lebanon and East Timor, Mr McGuane was first introduced to surveying as part of an artillery training course. Following his time in the Defence Forces, he worked in a variety of property related roles, both in the public and private sectors and spent the last ten years running a wide-ranging property management business in Galway. A long-standing member of the SCSI, he has held a number of senior roles in the organisation including Chair of the West / Northwest Regional Committee.

As the Asset Management Lead at the LDA he has responsibility for cost rental housing as well as land and site management. One of the key projects he is working on is Project Tosaigh which has expanded in recent months and will see the LDA purchase 5,000 homes which will be made available as cost rental or affordable to purchase homes.

Follow Irish building magazine on LinkedIn for the latest news and updates