Apprenticeships are a valuable part of our organisation Supporting National Apprenticeship Week 2022

Posted 07/02/2022

With the construction sector employing around 9% of the UK’s workforce[1], with 32% of this workforce being over the age of 50 and only 10% under the age of 25, Higgins Partnerships is committed to boosting the number of apprenticeship opportunities and improving the diversity in the sector.

This week sees the launch of the 15th annual National Apprenticeship Week (7-12th February) with the theme, Build the Future focusing on how apprenticeship can help individuals to develop the skills and knowledge required for a rewarding career, and businesses to develop a talented workforce that is equipped with future-ready skills.

Higgins Partnerships continues to lead the way in driving new talent into the construction industry. It was recently awarded Highly Commended SME Employer of the Year at the national finals of The National Apprenticeships Awards, having been named East of England winner, and East of England Recruitment Excellence award winner, and was also awarded Best Apprenticeship Programme at the Black Professionals in Construction Awards.

Steve Leakey, Managing Director of Higgins Partnerships said, “We are proud to once again be supporting National Apprenticeship Week. We understand the importance of career development and training and are extremely focused on creating apprenticeship opportunities across our sites and in head office. We have been investing in apprentices for over 30 years and continue to see it as a fantastic way to attract new talent into the business, and to support development and progression in the business.

“Over the next five years, the construction industry is expected to create 217,000[2] jobs and with this in mind, our strategy is to continue to support and build our apprenticeship programme so we can continue to grow our team and bring forward more skilled workers into the sector.”

Jack is an Electrical Apprentice at Higgins’ Barrow Hall Road site in Great Wakering, Southend-on-Sea through employment agents, TrAC. He had been interested in construction from a young age and used to work with his Dad, so after deciding to do an apprenticeship he found out about Higgins and decided to apply.

Jack comments, “My experience has been good and everyone on site have been helpful and supportive. I have learnt a lot about electricals and have a better understanding. I have also built relationships with the people I work with and realise how important communication is. I hope to have my own company one day.”

Higgins offers apprenticeships from Level 2 apprenticeship in trade-based roles such as carpentry and electrical, customer service, site supervision and business administration through to Level 6 degree apprenticeships on Higgins’ Management Trainee Programme which enables apprentices to achieve a Construction Management or Quantity Surveying degree apprenticeship.

Islington resident, Kamal was referred to Higgins Partnerships by I Work in Islington for a Site Supervisor Level 4 Apprenticeship in August 2020. He is now enrolled with London South Bank University working towards his qualification as well as working on Higgins’ Telfer House project in Islington.

Kamal commented about his apprenticeship, “It has really helped that some of the team used to be apprentices so they understand how to help me with my development. Working alongside the site manager has allowed me to get a better understanding of my role and I am more comfortable at doing my job effectively because of the training I have received on site.”

Melissa, a local Islington resident joined Higgins on a two-week work placement in the Social value team following successful completion of the Women into Construction training programme delivered by Islington Council. The Higgins team were so impressed with her that they recommended she apply for a Customer Service apprenticeship. She has just completed her Level 2 apprenticeship with a Distinction.

Melissa said, “I have been given a great variety of work, and an insight into the different teams so I can start to understand how they all fit into corporate social responsibility.”

On every project Higgins is commited to employing apprentices within the local labour market and recruiting apprentices of all ages. The company values transferable skills from previous roles in older apprentices as much as the raw talent that younger people bring to the industry.