A project launched by integrated services company Carillion to support and increase women engineers in the business celebrated its first anniversary with an event at the Institution of Civil Engineers.
With only 14 per cent of female undergraduates studying engineering and technology, Carillion wanted to make an impact which would increase the number of women engineers, which led to the launch of Project SNOWE (Support Network for Operational Women Engineers.)
Project SNOWE is a network where women from across the business are able to draw upon the experience, support and encouragement of their colleagues when working in operational roles.
Last year, Carillion launched a pledge with the aim of widening the talent pool of future technologists and engineers and inspire more young women to take up STEM subjects.
Carillion’s Pledge to Project SNOWE:
1) Encouraging girls to study STEM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths).
2) Attracting more women into our business via our apprenticeship schemes
3) Retaining our female staff in engineering roles
Since the pledge, Carillion has developed a tailor-made training module ‘Introduction to Technology and Engineering’ and delivered it in schools in the communities in which Carillion operates as well as marketing its schemes to engage and attract more women into the industry.
Speaking at the event Joan Murray managing director of TPS Schal, a founder member of the group said: “In a career where less than 10% of the workforce is female, it is important to support, encourage and retain women in their working roles. Which is why we are proud to support women outside the business through the Your Life campaign as we continue to actively take on the STEM challenge.
“It is quite overwhelming that so many people are supporting SNOWE and are now part of the network. We have achieved so much in just one year, we have delivered on our Compact Pledge in Carillion by rolling out SNOWE and supporting it at every level within the business. I can’t wait to see what next year has in store for us.”
Joan, who became the first female managing director in Carillion, has worked for the business for over 19 years in various roles on a variety of construction projects. She joined Carillion as graduate civil engineer and through training and development programmes, has moved from delivering in a technical role, into a management role at TPS Schal within the organisation.
In 2014, Carillion also became the lead corporate partner of Your Life and committed to increasing the number of its female apprentices by five per cent by 2019.
Your Life is aimed at 14 to 16 year-olds to highlight the exciting career opportunities which studying STEM subjects can lead to.
Also speaking at the event, Dr Ros Rivaz, a Non-Executive Director of the Your Life campaign said:”I am very pleased to be here today, representing the Your Life campaign and also supporting the SNOWE initiative. Carillion are an invaluable sponsor of Your Life, the campaign that reaches out to 14-16 year olds to encourage taking STEM subjects in school. By inspiring youngsters, particularly girls to take STEM subjects, we will give them the chance to pursue exciting careers, to earn well and we will contribute to addressing the significant skill shortage in UK, that is already impacting UK growth.”
Carillion has many support networks across the business such as; Women in Leadership and Working Mums Network to help provide and retain opportunities for women.