Service leavers offered construction experience to build brighter futures.

A group of Service leavers recently took part in the second in a series of BuildForce industry awareness events designed specifically for ex-military personnel 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. Since the programme’s first event with Lend Lease in June, BuildForce has already assigned 13 Service leavers with successful work placements within the industry.

Richard from Staffordshire commented on his work placement with Lend Lease:

“I met interesting and engaging people, undertook an enlightening and enjoyable placement and feel that it has broadened my horizons.

Whatever the outcome it has been hugely beneficial in aiding my mental and emotional transition out of the Services; I am better prepared for the commercial environment beyond the Armed Forces.”

The latest industry awareness event took place at RRC Aldershot and was hosted by Morgan Sindall a leading UK construction and regeneration group, and Wilson James, leading providers of managed security, construction and aviation logistics, and consultancy services in the UK. On the day, participants heard from industry figures, including Andy Parker, ex Squadron Leader in the Royal Air Force, and current Director of Defence at Morgan Sindall. 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.

Representatives from Morgan Sindall’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 Wilson James, Speedy LTD, Travis Perkins, Hanson as well as The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport.

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 the Construction Industry Training Board (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 be delivered by Crossrail on 21st October and will take place at the Tunnelling and Underground Construction Academy (TUCA). TUCA is a purpose-built training facility that supports the key skills required to work in tunnel excavation, underground construction and infrastructure. Participants will learn about careers in construction and the built environment and will have a chance to take a tour around the interactive learning centre.

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