News & Insights
Insights: Mercury’s Joanne Cluxton speaks about talent in the construction industry
Mercury’s Group HR Manager, Joanne Cluxton was recently featured in the cover story for the latest issue of Construction. The article features key industry leaders have been working to attract new talent, retaining and developing existing talent and planning for the future through engagement with young students, their parents and their teachers. Other panelists featured included:
- Alan McGrath, Director of Strategy, Research and Evaluation at SOLAS
- Steven Purcell, Client Development Manager at the Irish Management Institute (IMI)
- Dermot Carey, Director, Safety and Training at CIF
- Pat Lucey, President of CIF, and Managing Director of Civils Ireland, John Sisk and Son
- Lorraine Brady, Design Manager at BAM Ireland and;
- Nellie Reid, Managing Director at Meehan Green.
Key excerpts are highlighted below.
On attracting school leavers
“Attracting school-leavers into the industry is very important, We need to attract talented people into the industry and show them the vast number of available career opportunities. We also need to facilitate greater awareness of career progression paths and opportunities for parents and career guidance teachers to see. You have to go right down to primary school level. When children come out of primary school, they are choosing secondary school subjects, and that choice has a big influence on their careers. Awareness of the industry is critical at that stage.”
“Attracting school-leavers into the industry is very important, We need to attract talented people into the industry and show them the vast number of available career opportunities”.
On career progression within construction
“Many of the senior leaders in Mercury came through an apprenticeship. We have various paths for employees to progress along into leadership positions. Some of these paths include apprenticeships, our internal apprentice scholarship, our graduate programme, traineeships and various management and leadership training programmes. Hopefully, with these progression paths, we will encourage more people into the industry.”
On women in construction
“There are now, more than ever, an immense number of varied roles and opportunities for anyone interested in a career in construction,” she explains. “Mercury will continue to drive awareness of career opportunities, including bringing career fairs to girls’ schools. One area we looked at in early 2019 was to run a free Safe Pass training courses for female school or college leavers. Some of our female employees have progressed from apprenticeship or graduate level into more senior roles. We are also looking at ways to encourage women who have taken career breaks to focus on their family back into the workplace”.