Meet our Host Partner

Morgan Sindall Construction – Main Contractor

31 March 2021

INTRODUCTION

Founded in 1977, Morgan Sindall Construction, part of the Morgan Sindall Group, were one of the first contractors to partner with Y Prentis following our inception in 2012. As a main contractor Morgan Sindall develop projects with a value of between £50,000 to over £1bn within South East Wales. These range from schools to high profile builds such as the Royal Naval Reserve Unit HMS Cambria, in Cardiff Bay, and more recently Whitmore High School, currently being developed under the SEWSCAP 3 framework for their client, Vale of Glamorgan council.

As part of the project Morgan Sindall committed to benefitting the local community surrounding the projects through specific targets. These included Targeted Recruitment and Training (TR&T) which include apprenticeship employment weeks based on project value.

On the Whitmore High School project, Morgan Sindall worked with their approved subcontractors and Y Prentis to support 3 apprentices. Richard Kemble Contracts are currently hosting Dry Lining Apprentice, Joseph Stanton; Hazelwood Carpentry, Kyle Howells (Carpenter) and Smiths of Gloucester, Eliah Carpenter (Groundworker).

Richard Kemble Contracts have partnered with Y Prentis since 2017 and hosted a total of 8 apprentices with Y Prentis that are working across other projects on the SEWSCAP framework. Both Smiths of Gloucester and Hazelwood Carpentry are new partners that have successfully hosted their first apprentices with Y Prentis.

Through our nine-year partnership, Morgan Sindall have supported a total of thirty-one of our apprentices on a total of thirteen of their sites, either hosting apprentices directly, or by utilising the subcontract work packages engaged through their supply chain – as can been seen on the info graphic.

Examples of subcontractors who have supported our apprentices on Morgan Sindall sites include: Richard Kemble Contracts, ACL Brickwork, Darlow Lloyd, Smiths of Gloucester and Hazelwood Carpentry.

Main contractors bid against other main contractors to win larger tenders, such as Whitmore High School, which was tendered by Vale of Glamorgan council, under the SEWSCAP 3 framework. Successful contractors have a list of pre-approved sub-contractors (often referred to as ‘subbies’) who they then put out a number of smaller tenders (often broken down by trade, such as Carpentry, Bricklaying, Painting and Decorating, etc…). These pre-approved subbies then bid on these smaller tenders, and the main contractor appoints the successful subbies to form their cohort of subbies for that specific project, which they oversee. Richard Kemble Contractors for example, were successful in their bid for the following contracts at Whitmore High School: Steel Frame Contractor, Partitioning Contractor, Ceilings Contractor, Dry Lining Contractor and Walling Contractor.

WHITMORE HIGH SCHOOL APPRETICES VLOG:

Morgan Sindall created this short vlog to showcase the various apprentices working on their Whitmore High School site. Here the apprentices share their experiences working on the site and what benefits they have gained. Our Kyle Howells also participated in this video.

Q&A

You partnered up with Y Prentis for 9 years, since 2012. Why did you choose to get involved with Y Prentis initially?

The shared apprenticeship model is very useful for the construction sector as it allows companies that want to provide apprenticeship training opportunities, but don’t have the capacity to maintain them for the full term, the ability to pass on their skills and knowledge. We felt this was very important and wanted to support the scheme wherever we could.

Why are Community Benefits and TR&T Important to your company?

Creating Social Value through our projects to benefit the communities we work in is underpinned by our Morgan Sindall Total Commitments. It’s vitally important that we utilise the resources and opportunities that we have to help, train, support and develop our neighbours and wider communities.

How has Y Prentis helped you, as a main contractor, to fulfil your community benefit targets?

Y Prentis assists by contributing to our Targeted Recruitment & Training (TR&T) targets.
It’s not just about numbers though:

How has your experience thus far been, working with Y Prentis?

It’s been good. The team at Y Prentis are keen to help and work with us and our supply chain to maximise opportunities to host apprentices on our projects.

Why do you encourage your subcontractors to host apprentices on Morgan Sindall sites?

We have a great supply chain who want to work with us to achieve the best results. Apprenticeships are a great way for a business to train and nurture new talent to help maintain and grow the business. Often however, they don’t know who to approach, or how to go about hosting an apprentice. We signpost them to Y Prentis as they are able to support businesses through each step, including recruitment.

Why are apprenticeships important to you and/or to the construction industry?

Apprenticeships are important to us and the wider industry as it ensures skills and knowledge are continually passed to the next generation. It’s incredibly important that we provide opportunities for people to learn, train and develop. This is good for the industry and is also good for local communities and the local economy.

What is the most satisfying part of hosting an apprentice?

Seeing them grow. Often we’ll meet an apprentice at the start of their training and they’re a little bit nervous and perhaps a little bit naïve. It’s great to see them develop over time into a confident and capable individual able to do something they didn’t know how to do before.

What is the most challenging part of hosting an apprentice?

People come with challenges. It’s part of life and it’s something we do our best to help with. Sometimes it can be challenging when others don’t appreciate that and possibly expect too much too soon from someone.

What advice would you give to other companies considering hosting an apprentice?

My advice would be to make room if you can. You don’t know how just one opportunity could change someone’s life. The process doesn’t have to be difficult, especially with the support of Y Prentis.

What advice would you give a young person that is interested in taking up an apprenticeship? What attributes do you look for in your apprentices?

My stepson is currently in his final year as an apprentice and I wouldn’t have suggested this route to him if I didn’t believe in it. If you are interested in taking up an apprenticeship, then you really should do your own research. Ask questions, find out where the opportunities are, understand what college course you need to be signed up to. Apprenticeships are a great way to learn and gain qualifications while doing the job and earning money. They can be a fantastic gateway to a fulfilling career.

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