Balfour Beatty, a member of The 5% Club, is celebrating National Apprenticeship Week (9th -13th March) with a number of new commitments to assist more young people in finding work in the growing infrastructure sector.
Balfour Beatty is adding 150 new apprenticeship positions in civil engineering, construction, and business.
In addition, the company is encouraging companies in its 7,000-strong UK supply chain to join The 5% Club and increase apprenticeship numbers in collaboration with industry training body, the CITB.
Balfour is collaborating with 12 universities and colleges to deliver the new Trailblazer Higher and Degree Apprenticeships as part of Apprenticeship Week.
The construction behemoth will also hire an additional 80 young people into the industry by the end of the year through companies in the new Higher and Degree Apprenticeships Employers’ Consortium.
“There is a skills shortage, our industry needs talent, and this is our biggest ever commitment to recruit apprentices,” said Leo Quinn, group chief executive of Balfour Beatty and founder of The 5 percent Club. It’s a great industry to work in because we design, build, and maintain the infrastructure that we all rely on every day.
“The commitments we are making today demonstrate the proactive role we are taking to provide sustainable career skills for this country’s youth, working with the government, universities, and our supply chain partners to attract young people into this growing infrastructure sector.”
Balfour Beatty has collaborated with Southampton Solent University to deliver the Higher and Degree Apprenticeships scheme.
“We have been actively committed to the apprenticeship agenda for the last five years, developing higher and degree apprenticeships across our portfolio in close partnership with local and national employers, such as Balfour Beatty,” said Jane Longmore, deputy vice-chancellor (Academic). Degree apprenticeships are an important professional route for our current and future students, and we see them as an entirely complementary part of our applied curriculum.”
“I’m delighted that Balfour Beatty is to work to encourage its supply chain to join The 5 percent Club because it sends such a strong signal to smaller contractors who often feel that the time and cost involved is a barrier to taking on apprentices,” said Steve Radley, director of policy and strategic planning at the CITB. If we are to develop the skills required to deliver the strong growth forecast over the next five years, it is critical that we collaborate to assist smaller businesses in overcoming these perceptions and benefiting from the boost that apprenticeships can provide.”
The new Higher and Degree Apprenticeship standards represent a more professional approach to apprenticeships, allowing newcomers to the industry to move more quickly into management roles, where a skills shortage is emerging. Civil engineering, construction management, building services engineering, design coordination, and quantity surveying will all be available.
In three years, new entrants will receive an HNC and Associate or Technician professional status, followed by a full honours degree and Incorporated or Chartered status in another three years. They will gain valuable work experience, as well as a variety of additional industry qualifications, as well as a solid foundation for an exciting and rewarding career in the infrastructure industry.
The new Higher and Degree Apprenticeships, which begin in September this year, were developed with the help of the Chartered Institute of Building, the Institution of Civil Engineers, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, the Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers, and the Chartered Institute of Architectural Technologists.