GMI Construction Group
Young people in the North get set for the future with T Levels.
A construction company in the North of England is giving young people the opportunity to gain invaluable work experience and set themselves up for the future thanks to T Level qualifications.
GMI Construction Group is based in Leeds and has offices in Manchester, Birmingham and the North East and offers construction services, primarily to private developers, managing a range of building projects including warehouses, hotels and student accommodation.
The company is committed to developing early talent, currently employing more than 20 apprentices across a range of roles, largely degree apprentices who work in the construction and built environment, technical and quality surveying. Some 14% of its workforce are apprentices. And GMI recently took the decision to take on seven young people studying for a Construction T Level on Industry Placements.
Claire Preston, Head of Responsible Business, said the experience of hosting the students has been incredibly positive.
“These young people are our pipeline for future employees. They spend time with us, doing real work, gaining experience and providing us with the skills they are learning with the training provider."
The students are working in the company’s design and commercial departments with project managers and the supply chain.
She said: “We have the support staff internally to train these young people – it’s very important to us that they gain the experience they need to prosper and are not just left to themselves.”
The students are all treated like any employee, they have their own laptops, Internet access and will be put through an e-learning programme.
Once the students finish their qualification, the company is keen to offer successful candidates the opportunity to work with them as an apprentices. Claire said the end goal for GMI has always been to nurture the young people and keep them.
According to her, degree apprenticeships are a ‘no-brainer!
“There is a skills shortage in construction and we are very focused on developing young people. Apprenticeships and T Level placements are the future of GMI and we are very proud to support the programmes.
“One of the T Level students has had glowing reports in terms of attendance, willingness and eagerness to learn. I have told him to come knocking on my door when he finishes his qualification!”
GMI is a management contractor so relies heavily on it’s supply chain. At a recent assessment day for T Level students, the company worked with one of its designers, an architects, and are planning to take on two T Levels students, on a shared basis. So the young people will work with the architects on designing a building, and then working with GMI on site for the construction.
Claire said this will give the students a fantastic, broad experience of the construction process, from start to finish.
GMI is planning to increase the number of T Level students it takes on in the coming months – not just in construction but in a range of subjects. The goal is to have 15 T Level placements.
“The feedback about these young people has been incredibly positive,” she said. “It’s a fantastic opportunity for the young person and the employer – it’s like a 45 day interview – we get the opportunity to try before we buy – and I would highly recommend it. These young people highlight stand out students as potential employees and apprentices – they are our future workforce.”
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