Skills shortages in construction offices are stopping a quarter of contractors bidding for jobs.

The latest State of Trade survey from Build UK highlights how a lack of white collar staff is holding back construction companies.

Labour shortages prevented 25% of contractors from bidding for work during the third quarter of 2016 – up from 16% in the previous quarter.

The cost of labour is also rising with 60% reporting an increase compared to a year ago.

The survey shows the most difficult jobs for contractors to fill are professional/technical staff and supervisors, brick layers and carpenters.

The main reasons stated for difficultly in filling vacancies include a lack of required skills (47%), a low number of applicants with the required experience (44%) and a lack of qualifications (27%).