The latest Office for National Statistics (ONS) data tells us that just 13 per cent of the construction industry in the UK is made up of women. As an employer, you play a vital role in addressing the current lack of female representation within the sector. This short 3 part blog series explores how and why you should be looking to address this imbalance. If you haven’t already, be sure to read our previous blog ‘Why You Should Want Women in Your Workforce.’
In this blog we explore just a few of the effective ways of reaching out to women, and how to redefine the possibilities of a career in construction.
How to Get Women Into the Sector
To simply employ the very next female that happens to apply for a vacancy within your team would only be doing your workforce a disservice. It has always, and still remains a priority that the best person is employed for the job, irrespective of diversity quotas. Such short term thinking will ultimately lead to ‘over promoting’ individuals. Over-promoting will in-turn see them potentially struggle in role, hampering future progression within the sector, and damaging the reputation of women in construction rather than nurturing it.
Instead, participation in out-reach programmes, and working closely with institutions to change the perception that the construction industry is ‘a physical and hands-dirty’ job, is key.
Awareness and education of the diverse and rewarding roles within the sector need to be shouted about. Women need to see role models within the industry. High achieving women within construction need a platform, and need to be celebrated so that they can inspire the next generation of women in the sector.
Give some thought to how you can you play your part in shouting about your industry, and getting the word out to women. Do you already have a woman or women within your team that could be inspirational to others? How could you involve them, and open up communication channels within schools and institutions for example? Do you already participate in an apprenticeship, or work experience programme – could this be tweaked or tailored towards an increased female involvement?
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For more information on women in construction, read this great article by Construction News.