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North Midlands chief: Diversity is top of our agenda

The chief executive of North Midlands Construction Group John Homer has placed tackling diversity at the top of his firm’s recruitment agenda.

Speaking to Construction News, Mr Homer said the issue was a priority for the business and that the group are looking to “do things differently” when it comes to recruitment.

He said: “Diversity is high on the agenda. People make a business and we need to have the best people.

“This requires a whole raft of things: it’s not just a gender mix, but a lot of other factors as well.”

According to Mr Homer the firm has set up a programme for ex-offenders to get into the business.

He also added the group is focusing on using technology and innovation as a key part of delivering projects.

“The way we’re looking to structure the way we do our work is to take away the need for people on site,” he said. “We’re looking to be more efficient and do more work with less people.”

North Midlands Construction Group currently has two offsite factories and, according to Mr Homer, is also looking at new techniques to drive efficiency.

These include offsite fabrication works and delivering modular units.

Mr Homer’s comments come as the contractor announced its trading update. The group has seen a 4.7 per cent increase in revenue for Q1 to £62.2m from £59m from the same comparable period last year.

Profit before tax has increased to £580,000 compared to £237,000 from the same period last year, which Mr Homer says is down to “steady business”.

The group has secured £254m of work so far this year. This is compared to a total £250m of work that was secured for the whole year in 2016.

Construction has experienced a “slow start to the year”, which Mr Homer said was due to delays in getting secured projects under way due to the process of early customer engagement.

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