Construction apprenticeship programmes with an emphasis on ethnic diversity
If you are from a Black, Asian or ethnic minority background and thinking about an apprenticeship in construction, you might be wondering which apprenticeship programmes offer the best opportunities. Ethnic diversity in construction is an issue all the major construction companies are addressing, and the following schemes are from organisations which have demonstrated a commitment to improving diversity and inclusion.
Taylor Wimpey Apprenticeships
As one of the UK’s largest house builders and residential developers, Taylor Wimpey offer apprenticeships across its key trades of carpentry, bricklaying, scaffolding, roofing and painting and decorating. Apprentices spend most of their time with Production teams on site, supported by a mentor. Apprenticeships are completed in 3-5 years, depending on the trade and level of experience.
The company is committed to improving the number of people from ethnic minorities and women it employs, and has set clear goals to help accelerate change within its processes. Taylor Wimpey published its first Diversity Report in 2023, and each Taylor Wimpey regional business has a Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) champion and D&I action plan.
Laing O'Rourke Apprenticeships
Laing O'Rourke is an international engineering and construction company delivering state-of-the-art infrastructure and building projects for clients in the UK and across the world. Among its current and recent projects is the new stadium for Everton FC, and the Clatterbridge Cancer Centre hospital, also in Liverpool. Laing O’Rourke offers professional, trade and technical apprenticeships, giving talented people the skills needed to achieve in their chosen career while working as a full-time employee. Apprenticeship programmes at Laing O’Rourke range from Level 2 and 3 to Level 6 degree apprenticeships. The programmes open for applications in December (professional) and February (trade/technical) of each academic year.
The Skanska Group is one of the UK’s largest infrastructure construction companies, with more than 3,300 employees delivering projects in defence, education, highways, the rail network and water supplies. Skanska’s apprenticeship scheme gives people the opportunity to gain a recognised academic or vocational qualification while working full-time with the company. Skanska offers degree and higher apprenticeships in Civil Engineering, Mechanical and Electrical Building Services Engineering, Digital Technology, Data Analytics, Quantity Surveying and Construction Management. Advanced and Intermediate apprenticeships are available in careers such as Piling, Welding, Mechanical and Electrical Technicians, IT Support Technicians and Business Administration.
Kier Group Apprenticeships
The infrastructure specialists the Kier Group count HS2, the Channel Tunnel Rail Link and Crossrail amongst its projects, and offer apprentices great opportunities to build successful, rewarding careers. From civil engineering to HR, health and safety to highways maintenance, Kier gives apprentices the chance to gain a wealth of experience in a salaried role.
Kier is committed to ethnic diversity in construction, and ensuring the construction sector is welcoming for candidates from ethnic minority backgrounds. The company’s Expect Respect campaign educates employees on inclusive language and communicates Kier’s zero-tolerance approach to bullying and harassment. Kier has published a Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) road map that shows the D&I milestones the company has between now and 2026.
Willmott Dixon Apprenticeships
For anyone from an ethnic minority background considering a construction apprenticeship, Willmott Dixon really stand out in the way they champion equality, diversity and inclusion. The construction company’s senior management have diversity steering groups to address the gender balance and to enhance diversity within Willmott Dixon and the wider industry. Its goal is to have gender parity at all levels of the company by 2030. Willmott Dixon offers apprenticeships in a wide range of disciplines, including business support, carpentry, plumbing, bricklaying, plastering, maintenance operations and roofing.
Mace Group Apprenticeships
As befits a construction company that delivers bold, radical buildings, Mace has created a workplace culture that respects equality, values diversity and encourages individuality. Mace is a Stonewall Global Diversity Champion and has raised awareness of the benefits of having a gender balanced workforce. It has tackled barriers relating to racial equality, ethnic diversity, disability and LGBTQ+. The company run a number of networks that create awareness, knowledge and education, such as Women at Mace, Pride at Mace, Ethnic Diversity and Inclusion, and is proud of what it has achieved. Mace’s apprenticeship programme gives apprentices the chance to gain a nationally recognised qualification while being supported in their learning journey and earning a competitive salary.