Balfour Beatty today joins the Government’s Kickstart scheme to offer over 70 work placements to 16 to 24-year-olds at risk of long-term unemployment. Today’s announcement further supports the company’s ongoing commitment to young people and inspiring a new generation of talent within the construction and infrastructure industry.
In partnership with The Prince’s Trust – a youth charity helping young people get into jobs, education and training – Balfour Beatty will offer six-month work placements from April 2021.The programme is being delivered as part of The Prince’s Trust Coalition for the Built Environment scheme, comprised of six companies from the construction and infrastructure sector which aims to bridge the skills gap present within the industry.
On completion, Balfour Beatty aims to transfer Kickstart participants to the Balfour Beatty Apprenticeship Scheme.
Balfour Beatty has long been committed to youth employment, having joined The 5% Club- a dynamic movement of employers committed to ‘earn & learn’ roles as part of ensuring Britain’s social mobility and shared prosperity - in 2014. This commitment to social mobility is further demonstrated by the business’ support of The Social Mobility Pledge, to which it became a signatory in 2020.
Most recently, Balfour Beatty made a pledge to further support young people by increasing the number of apprentices, graduates and trainees recruited across the business by 30% in 2020 and currently has over 6% of employees in Earn and Learn positions, up from 5.4% in 2019 and exceeding The 5% Club goal.
Paul Raby, Balfour Beatty Group Human Resources Director, said: “As we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, there has never been a more critical time to open our doors to provide employment opportunities for young people - supporting them in building skilled careers is essential both for our industry and to help us to sustainably rebuild our economy and society.
“As we support this new Government initiative, we are pleased to be working with The Prince’s Trust to expand opportunities to young people and leave a lasting, positive impact on those who work with us.”
Ben Marson, Director of Partnerships at The Prince’s Trust, said: “The Prince’s Trust has 45 years of experience in supporting young people into jobs and we are delighted to be working with organisations such as Balfour Beatty to help ensure the Kickstart scheme sets young people up for success during this challenging time.
“Right now, we need businesses, government and individuals to work with us to help those young people who need us most. By bringing together organisations in the built environment sector to create an innovative coalition we are opening up opportunities for young people and helping them to realise their potential.”
Balfour Beatty’s commitment to attracting, developing and retaining talent forms part of its newly launched sustainability strategy, Building New Futures, in which it aims to positively impact more than one million people by 2040 through increased employment and training opportunities as well as social mobility.
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Notes to editors:
- Balfour Beatty (com) is a leading international infrastructure group with 26,000 employees driving the delivery of powerful new solutions, shaping thinking, creating skylines and inspiring a new generation of talent to be the change-makers of tomorrow.
- We finance, develop, build, maintain and operate the increasingly complex and critical infrastructure that supports national economies and deliver projects at the heart of local communities.
- Over the last 111 years we have created iconic buildings and infrastructure all over the world including: the £1.5 billion A14 improvement scheme - Britain’s biggest road project; Hong Kong’s HK$5.5 billion world-class harbour theatre project for the West Kowloon Cultural District Authority; and the 12.5 mile $429 million North Metro Commuter Rail line in Colorado, US.
- The 5% Club is a dynamic movement of employers committed to earn & learn as part of building and developing the workforce they need as part of a socially mobile, prosperous and cohesive nation. The Club exists to help its members and all employers increase further the number, quality and range of earn & learn opportunities across the UK.
- The 5% Club consists of more than 450 businesses from 22 sectors of the economy. It includes large and small private and public sector employers. Almost half of its members are small and medium sized enterprises.
- By joining The 5% Club, members aspire to reach 5% of their workforce in ‘earn and learn’ positions, including apprenticeships, sponsored student schemes and graduate training, within five years of joining.
- The 5% Club is a charity and is free for businesses of all sizes and sectors to join. Find out more at: https://www.5percentclub.org.uk/
About The Prince’s Trust
- The Prince’s Trust helps young people all over the UK to build their confidence and skills and supports them into jobs, education and training. Founded by The Prince of Wales in 1976, the charity supports 11 to 30 year-olds who are unemployed, struggling at school and at risk of exclusion.
- Many of the young people helped by The Trust are in or leaving care, facing issues such as homelessness or mental health problems, or have been in trouble with the law.
- The courses offered by The Trust give young people the practical and financial support needed to stabilise their lives, helping develop self-esteem and skills for work. Three in four young people supported by The Prince’s Trust move into work, education or training.
- The Trust has helped more than a million young people since it was founded. Further information about The Prince’s Trust is available at princes-trust.org.ukor on 0800 842 842.