“This one is simple – we need to educate and invest in young people and increase their awareness of the wide range of roles available.
“Personally, I only became aware of the opportunities in housebuilding because of the existing involvement by my family, not through any information at school.
“Many individual companies have launched apprentice schemes with entry from school which can be a great starting point for a lifelong career. I think as an industry we need to present these sort of opportunities in a more joined up way.
“At Inland, we have set up a formal partnership with Bucks UTC. Through this partnership we can offer young people the opportunity to visit live projects and provide them with classroom talks to give them a real flavour of who we are and what we do.”
“As an industry, we need to really improve how we engage with the community, starting with schools, colleges and universities. We have a great story to tell, it’s a big industry, it’s sustainable and enjoyable.
“I’m pleased to say that as a business we try to regularly engage with our schools across the regions in a variety of ways. We explain the range of trades involved in the build process – it’s not just bricklayers but joiners, plumbers and plasterers.
“We also try to highlight the roles available within the industry that people perhaps might not consider in fields such as architecture, marketing, finance, IT and explain how it all fits together.
“We also champion apprenticeships and continuous development, providing people the opportunity to move around within the business, enabling them to work out where they want to go from a career perspective.”
“I think we need to advise students to look carefully at the details and make sure they understand whatever part of the industry they wish to go into. So helping young people understand all the opportunities is vital.
“It’s a great industry, I’ve certainly had a fabulous time so far. We need to ensure we communicate an up-to-date message so people wouldn’t be put off by some of the old perceptions, such as an industry that’s dirty, stressful and has a lot of challenges. I think it is reforming and improving.”
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