Carole Goodwin, Human Resources Director at Wienerberger, discusses the skills shortage in the construction industry and how the company is working to combat it.
With many of the construction workforce nearing retirement, as well as the growing skills gap in the under 35s bracket, it is more essential than ever for employers to offer young professionals the opportunity to build a fulfilling career within the construction and manufacturing industries. Wienerberger is encouraging young people to consider a career in construction through its wide range of apprenticeships currently on offer across the business.
At Wienerberger, we recognise the importance of preparing for the future. By investing in apprentices, we are able to realise a robust and enhanced learning and development strategy that feeds into our overall business plan. We believe that apprenticeships are transformational for both the company and our employees — achieving a working life for staff that is both rewarding and fulfilling is a key objective for us. In addition to the typical craft apprenticeships on offer, including electrical and mechanical engineering, we also offer apprenticeships in management, ceramics, IT and customer services, with plans on expanding this even further. This means that we are able to not only encourage young people to create a career path in construction, but we can also tackle the ongoing skills shortage and play our part in bridging the gap for the future.
Wienerberger currently has an array of apprentices across various sites. One of those apprentices includes 20 year-old Sven Goerlach, who is currently training in Mechatronics. Sven commented: “I chose to apply for an apprenticeship with Wienerberger as I really admire their enthusiastic and supportive approach. My apprenticeship has allowed me to step onto the career ladder and gain practical, first-hand experience in my desired career path. Alongside increasing my confidence as a professional, it has also enabled me to build up my teambuilding skills, something that is prominent across all areas of the company.”
Stuart Wardale, Learning and Development Manager at Wienerberger, added: “We’re delighted to be able to offer such a wide range of apprenticeships to young professionals who are looking to break into the industry, and we’re extremely proud of the talented team members that have passed through it over the years. At Wienerberger, we will continue to offer our commitment and support to apprentices within the company as we work towards bridging the skills gap, and we’re looking forward to seeing the future generations of skilled employees flourish.”
National Apprenticeship Week takes place on the 5th-9th March 2018 and encourages employers and apprentices from across the country to celebrate the success of apprenticeships whilst also inspiring more people to choose this route as a pathway to a successful career within the construction industry.