With National Apprenticeship Week well underway, multi-award-winning developer Crest Nicholson has announced it is creating up to 34 apprenticeship vacancies in 2018 as part of its campaign to deal with the housebuilding industry’s skills shortage.
Last year, the company pledged to ensure at least 10% of its workforce was made up of apprentice. Today, 11% of the business staff comprises apprentices: 43 of them across the country in roles including quantity surveying, bricklaying, carpentry, electricals, painting and decorating, plumbing, customer service and marketing.
All Crest Nicholson trade apprentices are offered a fixed-term contract, where they get practical on-site experience alongside their NVQ course. They graduate from the scheme with an Apprenticeship Framework at Level 2 or 3 and an NVQ.
One of the key focuses in its plans is to attract more female apprentices, working alongside industry and education partners to increase diversity across the business, and providing facilities and support systems to encourage more women into the sector.
Charlotte Collins, an assistant site manager at Crest Nicholson Eastern, started her career as a Crest Nicholson apprentice. “Since joining Crest Nicholson as a carpentry apprentice seven years ago, I have been able to grow and develop my skills within the businesses,” she says. “If I had to go back I would definitely choose to do an apprenticeship all over again. It’s been a fantastic learning curve. Crest Nicholson builds a variety of different types of homes, which gives young people who are passionate about property development the chance to gain an understanding of the industry and broaden their skillset, all whilst being paid.”
Anthony Wilkinson, head of talent development at Crest Nicholson, adds: “With the current challenges facing the homebuilding sector, it is more important than ever before to find the right talent and support them throughout their journey. Our aim is to support apprentices entering the workforce build long and fulfilling careers across a range of jobs in housebuilding and to help them secure a role in the supply chain. As well as hands-on training, we offer a strong mentorship programme for our apprentices to help them learn skills from their peers and mentors to further sharpen their skill set.”
The apprenticeship scheme at Crest Nicholson will formally be open for entrants from summer 2018.
Come to listen and talk about housebuilding careers – apprenticeship, diversity, training and leadership – at our New Homes Debate in London on Thursday 15 March 2018.