Hull-based Sewell Group has invested in 25 graduates, apprentices and trainees this year, after pledging to support people who may struggle to enter the world of work.
The company’s Gateway Project, launched two years ago, aims to triple the number of graduates, apprentices and trainees recruited into the business, as well as providing opportunities for young people to gain real-world experience and skills. The company is on target to have 15% of its total workforce made up of these career-starting roles, and almost 50 people have benefitted from the scheme since 2021.
The Gateway Project promotes opportunities for the communities Sewell Group serves, in support of local economic recovery. As well as job opportunities in entry level roles, so far in 2023 the company has also provided 290 days of work experience and internships for young people who are looking to start a career in the industry.
Sewell Estates MD Jo Barnes, said: “We’ve always found it rewarding to bring in new talent and develop them into the leaders of the future. But making a definite pledge to triple our recruitment of entry level positions has really made us focus on how we can provide as many opportunities as possible.
“Since the pandemic, so many young people had their education disrupted, and they’ve found it very difficult to find jobs without being able to gain experience. We firmly believe that skills can be learned on the job, and we prefer to recruit for culture fit and attitude.
“We’re already seeing the benefits of our recruitment drive, with our new recruits bringing in creativity, drive and new ideas to the business. We’re looking forward to finding what they excel at and developing their skills to become the next generation of leaders.”
Several of Sewell Group’s senior leadership team progressed themselves from trainee, graduate or apprentice roles, so they know how valuable these opportunities are.
Mark Boothby, Joint MD of Sewell Construction, joined the company in 1996 as a trainee. He said: “Being given the chance to join a company that supports and develops its people enabled me to grow and learn the culture of the business, along with skills for carrying out new roles. There have been a number of opportunities for growth since I joined, which have resulted in me co-leading Sewell Construction. I recognise and feel responsibility to reinvest in apprentices and trainees to give young people the support and opportunities I’ve had in my own career, as at a young age you never know where your career may take you.”
Sewell Group is known as a construction company, but the Group has diversified considerably in the last 20 years, with forecourt convenience stores, facilities management, property investment and development partnerships and consultancy all now forming part of its business.