Award win shines spotlight on fast track apprenticeship programme


STEWART Milne Group is celebrating after being honoured with an innovation award for its approach to tackling skills shortages in the construction industry.

Trade body Homes for Scotland presented the team behind the Fast Track Apprenticeship programme with the accolade at a virtual ceremony. The programme offers apprentices the chance to train as site supervisors.

The first pilot was launched in March 2019. Following consultation with housebuilders, trade bodies, unions, sector skills councils, training providers and support from the CITB, Stewart Milne Group revealed that the additional pathway into the MA has been specifically designed for the housebuilding industry.

The firm hopes it will be rolled out for use by all housebuilders to attract trainees or develop skills in the existing workforce.

Susan Hudson, learning and development manager at Stewart Milne Group, said, “The whole team at Stewart Milne Group is absolutely thrilled to be recognised by Homes for Scotland for our successful MA programme. The last two years has been an incredibly tough period for everyone, and the construction industry has definitely felt the impact. We hope that this award will shine a spotlight on the programme and encourage more house builders to adopt it, in turn, bringing in an enthusiastic, skilled and ambitious workforce.

“As well as being a great opportunity for those currently working in the industry who are looking for career progression, the programme also markets the benefits to school leavers and those undertaking college-based studies, who don’t necessarily want to go to university but still want to have the opportunity to develop a professional career in a fast paced and progressive industry.”

Stewart Milne Group explained that the framework allows individuals to gain the MA using an SVQ in Construction Site Supervision, coupled with an industry recognised supervisory qualification – the ILM Diploma in Management and Leadership Practice for the Construction and Built Environment sector.

Participating employers will deliver on-the-job learning relevant to their own company which means the programme can be tailored to support each housebuilder.

Stewart Milne Group is currently training 34 apprentices and trainees, including civil engineers, quantity surveyors, sales consultants, architectural and design technicians as well as joiners, bricklayers, electricians, plumbers and painters.