Rydon Maintenance engaged with local schools and offered a week’s work experience to pupils during the summer holidays. Our initial trial, with Patcham School, in Brighton, gained a lot of interest and publicity. Since then, many young people have had the opportunity of working on our summer work experience programmes.

Rydon is committed to developing skills for school pupils and we look forward to an influx of good people into our workforce. The work experience schemes were designed to inspire young people to want to work in our industry and, hopefully, at Rydon.

The work experience initiative forms part of our Corporate Social Responsibility programme. We consider it good CSR because it meets Rydon’s business needs whilst contributing to the improvement and sustainability of the communities in which we are working, as set out in our CSR Policy.

The branch is working with local schools in the community to promote summer work experience programmes for 16 to 21 year olds.

The programmes have been designed and developed by our experienced supervisory team with the objective of providing candidates with practical experience of working in building maintenance. This gives them the opportunity to consider this as a career choice whilst, at the same time, obtaining an overview of Rydon as an organisation and business. Successful candidates can then look forward to the possibility of being selected as an apprentice and of becoming a full-time employee at Rydon.

The programme provides Rydon with a structured approach to creating employment opportunities and enables us to establish objectives and measurements of our success rates. It also enables us to continuously improve the programme by carefully observing how young people respond to different learning experiences and what is most successful in generating enthusiasm and positive motivation.

The primary benefit of the work experience initiative is to enable us to identify and select the most appropriate young people to join our team. At the same time it allows us to provide opportunities for young people looking for employment in the communities in which we operate. Running successful programmes such as these enhances our reputation with our clients and partners and improves our image as a good employer. By encouraging, advising, facilitating and promoting workforce developments, the resulting benefits are kept within the community, the skills base in the community is increased thereby contributing to the sustainability of the local area.

An example of a typical week’s work experience:

After participating in a work experience week in conjunction with Downland Housing Association, Rydon Maintenance offered 15-year-old Denzel Martin, a year 10 pupil at the Cardinal Newman Catholic School, in Hove, the opportunity of undertaking a week-long work experience programme based at our offices in East Grinstead.

A typical programme is organised as follows:

Day 1 - We carried out a site induction and a young person's risk assessment. Denzel shadowed the Helpdesk in taking repair requests from residents and was shown how repair works are scheduled on our in-house computer aided facilities management system.

Day 2 - Denzel shadowed a plumber, carrying out repairs to leaking sink taps, installing wash hand basins and fitting new bath taps.

Day 3 - Was spent shadowing a multi-trade operative carrying out fencing repairs, changing locks and easing and adjusting uPVC windows.

Day 4 - Denzel spent the day with a carpenter/multi-trade operative, renewing internal doors, kitchen worktops and ground works.

Day 5 - He worked with a multi trade operative laying paving slabs, repairing kitchen units and unblocking bath drains.

At the conclusion of his week’s experience, Rydon’s Service Manager, Richard Pickup, presented Denzel with a quality tool kit. The gift was:

  • To reward him for his enthusiasm and efforts during the week.
  • To assist in sustaining his enthusiasm for the repairs and maintenance industry.
  • To remind him that Rydon will be following his educational studies with a view to considering him for an apprenticeship.
  • To enable him to practice completing minor jobs at home.

All the team at Rydon were very pleased with Denzel’s attitude and the interest he demonstrated in building maintenance.

During programmes such as that we ran for Denzel, Rydon’s Training and Education Manager liaises with the young person’s tutors and supervisors to ensure that they are progressing with their work experience.