Willmott Dixon

Established in 1852, our organisation has grown to become a contemporary £1bn turnover business that has retained a focus on people.

We embrace diversity in the workforce and deliver projects and services of lasting value to the communities we work in.

We understand that everyone has a unique potential and ability to make a difference; if you want your skills developed and talent recognised, come and work for us!

Willmott Dixon is one of UK’s largest privately owned contracting, residential development and property support companies. We pride ourselves on our long history, and in being a sustainable company which respects and care for people in the wider environment.

Established in 1852, our business has grown to become a modern £1bn turnover business that has retained a focus on the people we employ, work for and that live in the communities in which we work. We employ 3,500 people at offices and sites across the UK, attracting and retaining the very best people in our sector.

Our success depends on the skill, knowledge, integrity and commitment of our people

We attract, develop and promote the best people in order to provide a high quality service to our clients and customers. We provide a working environment that makes people proud and happy at work, enabling them to give of their best. We make sure they have the training they need to help us remain industry leaders and we are committed to helping them achieve their full potential.

The core values that support everything we do:

Ethical – our people and operations meet the highest standards of conduct.

Sustainable  – our culture, training and ethos is about making sure we have the best people in the industry to work with our clients.

Contributing – we want to make society a better place for all, and that includes investing over £2 million a year in community projects.

Quality – we are vigorous and determined that the output of our work is the highest standard available anywhere.

Our sustainability development journey – We’ve been on this journey since 1852 Sustainable development has been a priority for us for a very long time, and our activities have shaped not only our own business, but our industry as a whole.

Diversity At Willmott Dixon

Strategically we wish to create and maintain a professional workforce capable of delivering an effective and efficient service.

By making the best use of all the available resources we aim to achieve our strategic and operational priorities. As a company which greatly values its reputation for acting ethically, we are committed to promoting diversity and appreciating the differences that diversity provides.

  • We recognise the value of a workforce in which people from differing backgrounds are encouraged to offer fresh ideas and perspectives.
  • We aspire to increase motivation and productivity for all our people by providing career opportunities based on merit and potential.
  • We provide a safe, secure and accessible working environment that values the diversity of our employees and future employees.

This approach highlights our commitment to the promotion of a harmonious working environment where dignity at work, equality and diversity are central; where no-one is subjected to discrimination because of their age, colour, disability, ethnic origin, sexual orientation, gender, marital status, religious beliefs, socio-economic background, or some other personal characteristic or circumstance.

This approach applies to all our people and extends to all those with whom a working relationship exists, such as supply chain partners.

Willmott Dixon is actively working to:

  • Value people and their differences and enable all of our employees to achieve their full potential.
  • Eliminate all forms of unfair discrimination (both direct and indirect), prejudice and victimisation.
  • Promote equality of opportunity and enhance choice and flexibility for all our people.
  • Treat people with dignity and respect, recognising the value of each individual.

In order to continuously embed equality and diversity into our culture:

  • Training is provided for managers as part of our well-established management development programme and managers are also required to attend the Group Diversity and Cultural Awareness training.
  • All new employees are given a copy of the Dignity at Work Policy as part of their induction and copies are posted on all notice boards.
  • Monitoring is carried out regularly with statistical data provided to the Board on a monthly basis.

Willmott Dixon is “seeking to extend and push the opportunity for women to join our business” in a bid to achieve a 50:50 gender balance by 2030.

Currently, women account for 24 per cent of the company’s total workforce.

The percentage of female trainees taken on by the firm last year was 40 per cent.

The contractor will aim to increase the percentage of female trainees taken on next year to 50 per cent.

Case Study:

Gemma Welsher – Director (Procurement).

Gemma has been working for Willmott Dixon for 10 years and was recently promoted to pre-construction manager, overseeing all tender and bid work for our Wales and the West office.

Managing a team of 15, Gemma thrives on the diversity and variety in her role but didn’t always plan on a career in construction.

Gemma says:

“At school I was actually really interested in art and English, but I was lucky to be made aware of the opportunities within the construction industry as my Dad was a lecturer in Construction in the built Environment.”

She continues “Through that course I got a real taste of all the possible roles in the construction industry, from bricklaying to management and surveying we got to experience the lot, which is where a lot of people miss out I think, as they are just not aware of the diversity of roles available to them”.

Although originally intending on a degree with Loughborough University, Gemma was given the opportunity to become a management trainee in quantity surveying for a construction firm, “that was something I would never have predicted, when quantity surveying was suggested my response was – ‘but I am no good at maths!’ it’s these preconceptions that we need to break down as I have honestly never looked back.”

Gemma then worked on several high profile projects before joining Willmott Dixon as commercial manager; “I really enjoyed working for here from the start, my roles have been interesting and challenging and what I really love is that every day is different.

One of the most satisfying parts of working in construction is the team work aspect, everyone pulls together to build something amazing.

I often drive past buildings and say ‘I built that!’ to my kids, not that I laid a brick of it, but that’s the point – there is so much more to creating a building than just laying the bricks.”

Gemma’s advice to young women thinking about a career in construction:

“To be honest I think the most important thing is to understand the opportunities available – regardless of gender, no matter what your skill set is there is probably something that will appeal to you” she continued “the industry is changing a lot at the moment, and new technologies are coming to the forefront so different skill sets and competencies are required; the options are vast and often surprising.”

Increasing Diversity in the Construction Industry – click here to read more…

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