Express & Star

Platinum status for Aldridge's SPV Special Projects Limited

An Aldridge company is celebrating after it was awarded platinum status within the 5% Club.

Kate Whatley

The 5% Club is a movement of employers who create earn and learn opportunities for their staff and the unemployed.

It has now honoured SPV Special Projects limited and the accolade means the business is now committed to employing more than five per cent of its workforce through the earn-and-learn scheme.

At SPV Special projects, more than 10 per cent of the workforce are apprentices and this prestigious award positions SPV in the top 30 businesses acknowledged for their dedication to employee growth.

Mark Cameron, chief executive at the 5% Club, said: "The Platinum Membership is a newly introduced top-tier honour within The 5% Club's Employer Audit, reserved for members who have achieved Gold Membership status for three consecutive years.

"Those selected have 10% or more of their staff members participating in apprenticeships, graduate schemes, or sponsored student programmes in their third year.

"Out of the 180 businesses included in the Employer Audit, SPV is one of the distinguished 30 businesses to have attained this prestigious award."

Meanwhile, 10 fellowships have been awarded by The 5% Club for its tenth anniversary.

And the distinguished list included Kate Whatley, commercial manager of SPV.

She will be part of a group who will act as role models for others as they look to deliver social impact.

Kate will be available to share advice and guidance by supporting the delivery of events. Kate said: “I have been a member of The 5% Club for the last five years.

"I am thrilled to have been appointed to the Honorary role as Fellow of The 5% Club. This appointment offers recognition of the significant contribution made in championing skills and workplace learning.

"Skills and education are so incredibly important to SPV and our values and principles align perfectly with those of The 5% Club.”

SPV is part of the Phoenix Consortia, expert roofing and cladding contractors, who developed a strategic partnership with Juniper Training in 2019.

Aware of the skills gap in the industry and the difficulties of recruiting apprentices along with the sparse availability of training, Phoenix set out to develop an offering to the industry for a pathway course and upskilling of the workforce.

Juniper Training now support over 40 young people in starting a career in construction each year, many of whom continue to develop their careers in the industry and upskill to full competence at a training centre in Aldridge.

Phoenix Consortia have employed over 12 apprentices over the last four years and have ensured long-term sustainability for the business alongside realigning the business from an ageing workforce to a diverse team all of whom are highly skilled team in their respective specialisms.

Many apprentices have won industry awards including NFRC Young roofer of the year, Construction apprentice of the year at the greater Birmingham Apprenticeship Awards and most recently Youthbuild Young Builder of the Year.

The training centre has won many accolades since its inception, including at The Inspire Awards Greater Birmingham Apprenticeship Awards and Ladder for the Black country Apprenticeship Awards.

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