National Apprenticeship Week: a future built on solid foundations

  • With the UK’s eleventh National Apprenticeship Week running to 9 March, it is an extremely busy time at Laing O’Rourke as it continues efforts to recruit the next generation of apprentices to drive the business forward, with recruitment now open for our 2018 apprenticeships.

Apprenticeship schemes are a key way of attracting the skills necessary to continue the work that has seen Laing O’Rourke grow into a multi-disciplined, international team with more than 15,000 employees across the globe. The Group is now offering 180 apprenticeships this year, from production management operatives at the EIP factory in Steetley, near Worksop, to carpenters, scaffolders, plumbers and electricians to name a few.

It is important to attract, retain and develop a diverse range of talented individuals to complete projects across the country, but there is a severe skills gap. To tackle this, the business creates opportunities for people who are passionate about careers in construction, hence its commitment to apprentices, which account for 5% of its total workforce.  Laing O’Rourke recognises that diversity and the inclusion of more women in the construction industry is important, and that apprenticeships is one way to drive participation.  

Joanna Vezey, Head of Talent, Inclusion and Social Sustainability at Laing O'Rourke, commented: “One of the most exciting developments in recent years is the growing number of women in construction. We offer many opportunities to build successful careers at Laing O’Rourke and to challenge stereotypes about diversity in construction. As we continue to evolve as a business, incorporating new and innovative methods of construction, this creates new opportunities for a workforce who have what it takes to be a success.”   

Laing O’Rourke is involved in a wide range of projects, each of which demands a different combination of skills and expertise. It offers apprenticeships across a total of 22 different discipline areas in line with its wider workforce needs.  

While traditional construction and engineering apprenticeships remain a core part of the business, the evolving nature of work means that new skillsets also play an important part in enabling the business to deliver on projects such as Hinkley Point C. As part of its recruitment programme for the project, in 2017 Laing O’Rourke collaborated with the University of Exeter to launch a civil engineering degree apprenticeship, making it the first Russell Group University to offer a degree of this type. This provides a snapshot of the variety of apprenticeship opportunities that are on offer.  

A career in construction can be highly rewarding and in such a competitive industry, the success of a business like Laing O’Rourke’s is dependent on its ability to attract the best and brightest minds from all backgrounds.  

Follow Laing O’Rourke on Twitter, Instagram or LinkedIn, to find out more from our existing apprentices and apprentice opportunities throughout National Apprenticeship Week. 

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