NOT only dedicated to helping people to step up the property ladder, Redrow is building a superb reputation for helping people climb the career ladder too.
The company has been recognised in the prestigious Top 100 Apprenticeship Employer list three years in a row. And it continues to cement its commitment to helping young people forge a future in its industry.
Three people who are proof of Redrow’s promise are Matt Rooney, Scott Price and Richard Perrin.
Matt, 27, from Ashford in Kent, is currently site manager at Redrow’s Ratio development in Erith. But he began his career with the company nine years ago as a carpentry apprentice.
“In my final year doing carpentry I started helping more in the office too, and I asked if I could become a trainee site manager as I really enjoyed what I was doing,” said Matt.
“I spent two years as a trainee site manager, one year as assistant site manager and, for the last three years I’ve been working as site manager.”
“I love what I do,” said Matt, who has a four-month-old daughter, Ava, with wife Hannah, who also works for Redrow. “The site I am working on at the moment is a really big project with 372 units and I love the challenge of meeting deadlines without sacrificing the product and getting 10 out of 10 ratings from customers.
“I manage the site with Nick Smith who is the same age as me and came into the company as a graduate, so it goes to show that there is more than one way into this job, and you can progress just as quickly with an apprenticeship. Nick and I have the same job, equal responsibility and we’re on the same page. He went to university to study construction, while I learned on the job. There is a choice.
“I started at the bottom and worked my way up but I want to go higher, definitely looking towards being a project manager and contracts manager, if not construction director. I’m aiming high – and the opportunities are there with Redrow.”
Scott Price, 25, from Coalville in Leicestershire is following in his father’s footsteps but he has built his own career with Redrow, starting as an apprentice bricklayer at the age of 16.
“My dad has been with Redrow for 20 years and is a project manager. He always suggested I follow him but, as a boisterous young lad, I was against it. Then, when I was 18, my dad went on holiday and I was given more responsibility on site.
“It was really exciting and got me into what I’m doing now. I have come a long way in a short time due to the support and encouragement.”
Although he has spent brief periods away from Redrow, Scott has continued to climb the ladder with the company, rising to assistant site manager in 2010.
“I came to Chestnut Walk in Bilston as site manager in 2015,” Scott said. “For me, I learned a lot more working as an apprentice on the job with one day at college, than I would have done just at college. I was ‘doing’ it. There is so much support and mentoring from people with so much experience so you learn so much more and more quickly. I am apprentice co-ordinator now for someone on my site, so I’m helping someone to learn like someone helped me.”
Richard Perrin, 29, is a former Redrow apprentice who now has his own company and is a sub-contractor on the St Andrew’s Park development in Halling, Kent.
And he owes his career to Redrow which, he added, helped get him on the right path. Richard went to train with the army as an electrician before being discharged on medical grounds due to an accident before he joined.
“I was 24 when Redrow took me on having thought I wasn’t going to be able to do what I wanted,” said Richard, who owns RJD Electrical. “For a short time after leaving the army I had no direction and that doesn’t lead to good places. I could have taken the easy route with benefits but I didn’t want to do that. I didn’t think that Redrow would take me on at my age but they did.”
Richard started his Redrow career in Maidstone, Kent, working initially as a labourer, before being taken on as an apprentice electrician: “I completed my apprenticeship in two years instead of three and then Redrow offered me more training in testing and inspecting.”
He worked on other sites before setting up his own company which he had always wanted to do, but he is still very much involved with Redrow: “I am the only electrician at St Andrew’s Park as sub-contractor, but my goal is to get on Redrow’s approved contractors list and continue building links with them. I am currently training apprentice electricians with Redrow.
“I have a long way to go and you never stop learning. I would eventually like to specialise in renewable energies and be the company that everyone else looks to. I have ambition and Redrow made that a possibility.”
Redrow now has more than 100 bricklaying, carpentry and joinery, electrical and plumbing apprentices working on its housing sites across the country, giving young people the chance of career in construction; as well as office-based business administration, commercial and technical apprentices.
Karen Jones, HR director for Redrow Homes, said: “Due to high demand for homes and our commitment to nurturing and supporting young talent, we are constantly increasing the number of trade apprentices we take on.
“It’s our job not just to train them and give them the help they need to succeed, but to encourage them to stay in the industry to ensure we overcome any skills shortages to create a sustainable future for everyone. I am delighted to say we have achieved this with many of our apprentices progressing through the ranks to managerial roles.”
For more information about apprenticeships go to redrow.bblabs.co.uk/apprentices