Mohamed transported to success

MohamedAggwaniM1bmJVphotos4_124736Mohamed Aggwani (23) had recently achieved a Masters of Engineering (MEng) Degree in Civil Engineering, but had been finding it difficult to secure a job in Oxford where he lived with his family.

Morgan Sindall was offering an administrative work experience opportunity on a project based in Oxford. Mohamed saw this as a good opportunity to get some experience with a recognised leading engineering contractor.

Mohamed says, “During my work experience placement, I got involved in a variety of interesting tasks and was given plenty of opportunities to gain skills and aid my professional development as a civil engineer. The tasks I was involved in gave me an all-round experience of what contractors do on site and increased my knowledge and confidence.”

At the end of the eight-week placement, Mohamed made it clear that he would like to pursue his career with Morgan Sindall.

Andrew Beadle, Project Manager, spoke with his colleagues to recommend Mohamed, and learned that there was an engineering opportunity at a project in Leeds.

Mohamed jumped at the chance to apply, despite the change of location. His application was successful.

He started employment, and is enrolled on Morgan Sindall’s graduate development programme. Mohamed will also shortly start work on his Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) professional registration.

Stef Wilson, Project Manager on the M1 project, said, “We are always keen to foster and retain talent, and Mohamed had already demonstrated his enthusiasm and commitment. Through good communication, collaboration across our business and timing, the circumstances were favourable for Mohamed and for Morgan Sindall.”

A FIRst class employer

CITB BE Fair FrameworkUK construction, infrastructure and design business Morgan Sindall was looking for external approval for the work it was doing around Fairness, Inclusion and Respect [FIR] when CITB introduced its Be Fair accreditation pilot.

“The timely opportunity to be involved in something industrywide was compelling”, said Samantha French, Strategic Inclusion and Community Manager.

“Taking the Fairness, Inclusion and Respect Be Fair accreditation will help make Morgan Sindall an employer of choice”.

“Morgan Sindall had had an ‘Inclusion Plan’ in place since 2011 and had been investigating the various equality frameworks on the market in order to achieve external approval for the work we do around equality, diversity and inclusion,” Samantha said.

Taking part in the pilot was time-consuming but ultimately rewarding, she said. Among other benefits she felt the accreditation would also support business development and tendering activities and the experience itself was gratifying.

Without doubt, Samantha felt the accreditation had raised the profile of the company’s success in this area both internally and externally, and has helped to ensure that inclusive practice is at the heart of what it does.

Morgan Sindall’s top tips for Be Fair accreditation

  • Ensure buy-in from all levels of your organisation
  • Communicate what you are doing and why
  • Use the advice and support available
  • Make sure you have a good team leader who has a passion to see it through

The full case study can be found on the CITB website

Morgan Sindall at Liverpool Pride

IMG_4238_144654Morgan Sindall is passionate about supporting the communities around the UK in which they work and attending Liverpool Pride presented a great opportunity to do this. Constructing Equality coordinated events which saw Morgan Sindall, alongside a range of other companies, represent the construction industry.

In addition to this, Morgan Sindall also wanted to promote construction as a career of choice to all with whom they spoke, as well as to highlight the dangers of construction sites to children. Hence they invited Ivor Goodsite to the event along with the Hunt the Hazard board. Ivor really helped to encourage festival goers to come and speak to everybody and even had a little dance to the variety of music!

Construction Industry Shows Support at Liverpool Pride 2014

PrintRepresentatives of several major construction industry organisations will be showing their support for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community by attending this year’s Liverpool Pride celebrations.

The Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) will be among the organisations attending the event, along with AECOM and ISG who are both involved in the current £40 million Liverpool Exhibition Centre project on the waterfront. Leading UK construction firm Morgan Sindall, and the cutting edge Space Architects will also be in attendance.

Liverpool-based company Constructing Equality Ltd – the UK’s leading experts on Equality & Diversity in the construction industry – was behind coordinating the efforts of all these organisations to be present, ensuring that construction will have a strong presence on the day.

Chrissi McCarthy, Managing Director of Constructing Equality Ltd, said: “There was a really great response when we started to get the companies together for Liverpool Pride. It seemed like they all wanted to get involved, and represent the industry at events like this, and had resources set aside to make a splash on the day. Hopefully this will demonstrate to the LGBT community that construction has started to move on from the old fashioned image often portrayed”

The construction industry is keen to shed its out-dated image as having a stereotypical, macho, ‘jobs-for-the-boys’, culture and to demonstrate that equality and diversity are very much the current way forward in their business practices. To add weight to this drive, the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) has recently launched their Be Fair Framework, designed to provide guidance and accreditation for companies within the industry who wish to demonstrate their commitment to this agenda. Constructing Equality Ltd is the first company licensed as providers for assessing companies on this framework.

Kate Lloyd, CITB’s Fairness, Inclusion and Respect Manager, commented: “Be Fair was put together to highlight the importance of Fairness, Inclusion and Respect in construction. Its aim is to provide a straightforward route for organisations to take to address some of the issues that the industry, its employees and customers are currently facing.

“As an industry, we need to show that we embrace diversity – by attending events like Liverpool Pride, more people will get to see the range of careers available and hopefully consider coming to work in our exciting sector.”

Sam French, Strategic Inclusion and Community Manager, says: “Morgan Sindall is a UK construction, infrastructure and design business with a network of local offices and we’re passionate about supporting the communities around the UK in which we work. That’s why we’re proud to be present at Liverpool Pride. What’s more, we’re also really keen to promote construction as a career of choice, so I’d like to encourage anyone who is interested in finding out more about the industry to talk to us.”

Those wishing to visit the construction industry representatives can find them in the family area at the Pier Head after 12pm where there will be construction based games and activities for the family to enjoy.

33 contractors set to receive ‘BeFair’ accreditation under new CITB scheme

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The new BeFair accreditation scheme, which involves going through a rigorous assessment akin to attaining Investors in People has been developed by the CITB in association with Liverpool-based consultancy Constructing Equality to support the industry in developing fair and inclusive employment practices.

The two organisations have recently conducted a pilot scheme during which 40 companies were assessed and 33 accredited, made up of both small and large firms. Another five received conditional passes, said a CITB spokesman. The CITB declined to name those firms who had passed, but Vinci and Morgan Sindallwere two of the big names that took part.

The CITB is hoping that its new framework will help stamp out outdated and unacceptable practices in the sector which it has been highlighting over the last few weeks. In a latest analysis of data released by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) it was found that, on average, women in construction are paid 12% less than their male counterparts in the same role. Among construction and building trades supervisors, the differential is as high as 33%.

Based on the hourly rates paid to men and women, the figures show pay discrepancies in construction and building trades supervisors of 33%; architects 25%; and electrical and electronic technicians 24%.

“The whole point of the new framework is that companies will need to demonstrate they are acting on these sorts of issues and make sure they are addressed,” added the CITB spokesman. Companies are under increasing pressure to demonstrate their inclusion and diversity credentials, particularly for clients in the public sector which is one reason the new scheme was oversubscribed when the pilots were announced last year with 148 firms initially registering interest.

Kate Lloyd, fairness, inclusion and respect manager for CITB said: “What possible justification can there be for paying men and women different rates for doing what, to all intents and purposes, is the same job? As an industry, we need to address this issue, and fast. If we fail to bridge these wage gaps, we won’t be able to attract women into this industry or keep them. It’s as simple as that. The BeFair Framework, which will launch in June, will help construction companies be more aware of fairness, inclusion and respect issues including equal pay. It will help us to challenge the outdated perceptions of the construction industry so that we can create the workforce of the future.”

It is understood that the CITB will tender for an operator to run the scheme and carry out the assessments.

Responding to the recent statistics on pay disparity, Roy Cavanagh MBE, training and education executive for Seddon, said: “As an industry, construction is crying out for talented women to get involved and take advantage of the career opportunities on offer.

“Currently women make up just 12% of the construction industry workforce, with a mere 1.2% working in the manual trades. To create a fairer and more inclusive workforce, we need to make sure that women get equal pay.”

The BeFair scheme offers a construction-specific alternative to the Investors in Diversity standard, and allows companies to gain accreditation at four different levels. It offers best practice guidance on recruitment, training, promotion, remuneration, work-life balance and subcontracting work.

Contractor Graham, one of the test companies, says it has already identified improvements across its business, especially among the workforce on site, in terms of morale, motivation and commitment to fairness, inclusion and respect for everyone.

The CITB framework enables companies to develop and progress as they move through accreditation levels. Level 1 involves simply complying with the Equality Act 2010 and other legislation, through to being a leading light for best practice in the sector at Level 4.

The framework is written in “strands” that segment the sector into its different types of organisations, such as clients, Tier 1 contractors and subcontractors.

Surrey Council launches “eBay” for subbies to bid for work

This article was taken from Construction Enquirer – click the link to read the full article.

Surrey County Council is launching an eBay style website for subcontractors to bid for work.

Morgan Sindall, Mansell and Osborne are helping the council with the BuildSurrey site which is due to go live in February.

Council chiefs insist that work with main contractors will be awarded on the basis of quality as well as price.

The BuildSurrey site will also act as an apprenticeship matching service – bringing businesses offering places together with potential candidates.

Surrey County Council deputy leader Peter Martin said: “In the current climate, we must do everything we can to support the local economy and our aim is to ensure 60% of the county council’s spending is with local businesses.