Higgins commits to ‘earn and learn’ by joining The 5% Club

Posted 07/02/2020

Higgins Group plc has showcased its commitment to developing its people by joining The 5% Club, an industry led initiative focussed on driving momentum into the recruitment of apprentices, graduates and sponsored students.

The 5% Club, initiated by Leo Quinn, Group CEO of Balfour Beatty in 2013, is a movement of more than 300 employers providing ‘earn and learn’ opportunities to develop the skills and talents people need to become more employable and create meaningful careers. Companies joining The 5% Club commit to raising the number of apprentices, sponsored students and graduates on formal programmes to 5% of their total workforce within five years. Members are also asked to publicly report their progress in their Annual Report. Existing members range from SMEs to FTSEs and cover a number of diverse industries, from engineering through to the legal sector.

Richard Higgins, Chairman of Higgins Group plc said, “For nearly 60 years we have been committed to investing in our people and recruiting the best, most talented and innovative people in the industry and the percentage of long-service employees in our company reflects just this.

“We recognise the importance of career development and provide our staff with opportunities to ‘earn while you learn’ both onsite and in the office through a range of apprenticeships, degree qualifications and as part of our successful management training programme. We are proud to be part of the 5% club and look forward to working with them to promote the range of career choices available within our industry.” 

Lady Cobham, Director General of The 5% Club said, “We’re delighted to welcome Higgins Group plc into membership. The 5% Club provides a fantastic network of HR professionals, sharing and learning from each other.  All our members share an ethos of creating a skilled workforce through ‘earn and learn’ development programmes, helping people develop meaningful career paths.”

On every project, Higgins works closely with the local community to create employment and training opportunities and support the up-skilling of local people, helping them to receive the necessary training needed to take on the roles.

The Higgins Management Training Programme also works to identify young talent who wish to development their careers in the construction industry and built environment The programme allows individuals to get a taste for a number of core disciplines throughout the company before deciding on a discipline to specialise in.

During term times trainees work a four day week, with the remaining day spent at an industry accredited University working towards a Construction related BSc (Hons) degree. The programme fully funds the degree and allows individuals the opportunity to ‘earn whilst they learn’ without the burden of debt once the course has been completed. Individuals will earn a competitive salary and will benefit from performance based annual pay rises. Each trainee is also enrolled on a mentoring programme offering guidance on their career from a senior member of the team.