Lovell is one of them and, alongside its sister companies in Morgan Sindall Group, has just been acknowledged for its commitment to making the most of the skills former military personnel can bring to the construction industry.
The business has achieved a Silver accreditation with the Armed Forces Covenant for its contribution to a scheme that ensures current and former military personnel and their families are treated with fairness and respect.
Morgan Sindall was able to apply for accreditation as it is a signatory of the Armed Forces Covenant, a partnership that exists between central and local government; the Royal Navy, British Army, Royal Air Force; along with businesses of all sizes; and several key charities.
As of 1 January 2023, the British Armed Forces had a total strength of 190,170 personnel, consisting of 147,620 UK Regulars and Gurkhas, 34,280 Volunteer Reserves and 8,260 people listed as Other Personnel. Around 14,000 people leave service careers in a typical year. Figures from the Office for National Statistics also show that on average 1.7 million households (7% of the UKs total) have a parent, sibling or family member who works for the British Armed Forces – which equates to around 710,000 military partners and 174,000 young people.
Lovell has a long history of supporting service families, and many of its employees have a link to the Armed Forces, whether they are embarking on a career with the business, are serving in the Reserves or are partners of those serving in the Regular Forces. What’s more, many Lovell supply chain partners have also come from a military background.
In addition to employment opportunities, Lovell has played an active role in supporting the Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO), building homes for returning army families in Stafford and Salisbury Plain.
Comprising 346 service family homes, Beacon Barracks in Stafford is a scheme that at its peak, delivered 15 new homes per week; a number which at the time was unprecedented in UK low-rise housing. Lovell has also undertaken the development of three sites in the Salisbury Plain training area. This delivered over 900 new homes in a two-and-a-half-year period, reinforcing Lovell’s commitment to the military community and showcasing innovative approaches in the build programme.
Sarah Boyd, Director of HR at sister company Morgan Sindall Construction said, “It’s very pleasing to achieve this milestone and it’s part of our on-going strategy to support this highly skilled community find opportunities in the construction industry.”
The process to complete the Silver accreditation was initiated, with support from Sarah Boyd, by Andrew Waddington, senior technical manager for Morgan Sindall’s London and Home Counties team. Andrew has an Army background himself – having spent 19 years serving in the Royal Engineers.
Sarah Boyd and Andrew Waddington initially sought to complete the application on behalf of their division - Morgan Sindall Construction. But after hearing the positive activities that others across the Group had completed, they collaborated with colleagues to submit on behalf of Morgan Sindall Group.
Major General Marc Overton, Assistant Chief of Defence Staff said: “I would like to thank and congratulate the recipients of this year’s Employer Recognition Scheme Silver awards. A Silver award recognises the fantastic efforts of employers throughout the UK who have both elevated their commitments under the Armed Forces Covenant and provided actual benefit to the Armed Forces Community. The winners should all be proud of the life-changing impact and fresh opportunities they are providing to our Reservists, veterans, and their families. The number of winners this year yet again shows that the Armed Forces family talent pool is also providing tangible business benefit.”
Morgan Sindall will continue its commitment to our armed forces with a target of achieving ERS Gold accreditation and have already set the wheels in motion to achieve the required criteria.
The ERS Gold Award requires employees who are part of the Reserves 10-days paid leave to undertake exercise or training or to maintain their pay if they are deployed. Morgan Sindall has already committed to this 10-day requirement. In the hope that not only it offers opportunities for those a part of the Reserves and the business already but might also encourage those to join knowing that they are supported by their employer.