Analysis from payroll firm Hudson Contract suggests that large ﬁrms have cut 30% of subcontractors since the week before lockdown. SMEs, by contrast, are using only 21% fewer subcontractors.
Ian Anﬁeld, managing director of Hudson Contract, said: “Our ﬁgures show how SMEs are leading the recovery in the construction industry. Smaller companies are proving more resilient, agile and adaptive to the new circumstances and are investing in skilled subcontractors to retain productive labour and ﬁnish jobs.”
He added: “By contrast, large construction ﬁrms tend to work on more complex projects which have been hit harder by the downturn.”
The activity levels of large ﬁrms have recovered since the depths of lockdown when the average number of subcontractors paid fell by 77%.
Meanwhile, the average number used by smaller ﬁrms dipped by 66%. Hudson compared the average number of freelance tradespeople paid in the weeks commencing 16th March, 20th April and 20th July. The analysis reﬂects the labour demands of micro, small, medium and large companies that continued to operate during the period.
Overall, average weekly earnings for subcontractors recovered by 4.8% to £889 during the month of July, the highest number since March.
|Region||July 2020 Average||Month on Month % change||Year on Year % change|
|Yorkshire & Humber||£836||9.9%||-3.6%|
|East of England||£966||7.8%||1.9%|