This is not a rant against the building trade, nor against my profession – despite what my follow I still love the job I do, why else would I put myself through so much shit if I didn’t?
Yesterday one of our major clients – the client I deal with – announced that they had overspent the Capital Expenditure budget for this year and were putting all work on hold until February. The extent to which they had overspent became more and more apparent as the day as not only were planned projects put on hold, but also work on site and eventually we – as consultants – were told to do no more work for them until February, or that any we did would be at risk. News of this hasn’t hit the market yet as their share price continues to rise, but it can only be a matter of time. No official explanation has been given but lots of ugly rumours are flying about at the moment.
Both myself and the other guy in the office who work for this guy have had all work pulled from under us. Thumb twiddling isn’t happening yet, but it’s only a matter of time.
Another big name client is having similar wobbles, so work from them has had a similar drop-off. The long and the short of this is that this morning the partner in our office had the conversation with us all and warned that redundancies were likely. One major client dropping all work can be absorbed, two is pushing it. Emergency meeting for the partners this afternoon, we may know more tomorrow.
As of now I’m officially bricking-it.
Now, boom / bust cycles are part of the economy and the building trade is always one of the major parties to suffer (as my dad’s experience of the same has taught me), but this is the first recession I’ve worked during so I’m feeling more than a little nervy at the moment. Even though the client has stated that work will be coming back online in February I cannot help but feel nervous. I expect that there’s at least another eighteen months of this uncertainty to come before were back on track.