As part of its drive to recruit 1,000 skilled workers a year, Bovis has agreed to take people from prison, low-skilled workers and the unemployed, and train them in the skills they need to succeed on site.
The scheme, known as BeOnsite, is run in partnership with Jobcentre plus, and offers a guaranteed job to anyone who successfully completes the course.
It has already run courses for a first intake of trainees, and is now celebrating the first employee to come through the scheme – Meurika Stewart, a former drug offender still serving the final months of her prison term.
Bovis is running the scheme together with subcontractors such as dry liners Measom and fit-out firm Swift Horsman, who provide practical experience in exchange for an employee at the end of the programme.
Bovis CEO Murray Coleman said: “For me personally, this has been one of the most rewarding things I’ve been involved in in 20 years in the industry.
“We’ve been able to ring the changes for people who need it most. And we’re not just helping the unemployed, but contractors struggling to find skilled workers.
“Everybody benefits from it.”