Service leavers given the chance to build a brighter future

A number of Service leavers are soon to be taking part in valuable work placements in various roles within the construction industry.

Over 60 ex-military personnel attended the first in a series of BuildForce industry awareness events specifically for Service leavers interested in finding out about careers in construction.  A number of industry employers have joined together to provide a minimum of 70 work placements for Service leavers in an effort to bridge the expanding skills gap and provide Service leavers with a new career path.

BuildForce is a programme created for Service leavers who are interested in finding out about career opportunities in the construction and built environment sector. It is designed to support ex-military personnel to gain experience and employment through the provision of industry awareness events and a work placement brokerage.

The first industry awareness event took place at RRC Northolt and was hosted by Lend Lease, one of the world's leading fully integrated property and infrastructure solutions providers. On the day participants heard from industry figures, including Oliver Turner who successfully made the transition from Lance Corporal to Construction Manager with Lend Lease 6 years ago. Attendees also learned how their skills are transferable to careers in the trades and professions and had group sessions with employers, some of which were also ex-military personnel.

Feedback from the day:

"It was definitely worthwhile and I enjoyed the relaxed format, with opportunities to properly speak to the company representatives."

"Yesterday was a really good day. It certainly helped me out with finding out how my skills are transferable."

Representatives from Lend Lease's supply chain were in attendance to meet with the Service leavers to provide careers advice, and information on the work placements available. The employers were Carey Group, Lyndon Scaffolding, Openreach, T Clarke and Wilson James, with support from the Institution of Civil Engineers, National Construction College and CITB.

With more than 182,000 jobs being created within the construction industry in the next five years, the BuildForce programme can provide support for those looking for a second career in the industry and introduce employers to a talented workforce. An average of 36,400 construction workers will need to be recruited every year, with a predicted increase in demand for construction managers, as well as project and package managers.

BuildForce is part-funded by CITB Growth Fund and delivered by Construction Youth Trust, CITB and Circle Three Consulting with the Career Transition Partnership. BuildForce is designed to better inform ex-Service personnel of career opportunities in the sector, whilst also encouraging construction and built environment employers of all sizes to recruit from this pipeline of talent. BuildForce employer partners are Carillion, Crossrail, Lend Lease, Morgan Sindall and Wilson James.

The next BuildForce industry awareness event will take place on 24th September at RRC Aldershot, at 10am. The event will be delivered by Morgan Sindall and Wilson James, along with their supply chains. The subsequent event will be delivered by Crossrail on 21st October and will take place at the Tunnelling and Underground Construction Academy (TUCA).

To find out more about the BuildForce programme, the industry awareness events and the work placements on offer contact the Trust on buildforce@cytrust.org.uk 0207 467 9540 or visit the webpage www.buildforce.org.uk