GMI Construction Group awarded gold by The 5% Club


Libby Whitaker-Keating

GMI Construction Group has been awarded Gold accredited membership via The 5% Club’s Employer Audit Scheme

This award recognises the significant contribution it has made to the continued development of its employees through “earn and learn” schemes.

One of the largest independent construction companies in the North of England and the Midlands, GMI Construction Group has long championed apprenticeships as a way of encouraging young people into the industry.

The 5% Club is made up of more than 900 companies which represent 1.6m employees, 101,000 of whom are in ‘earn and learn’ schemes. The UK employer-led charity inspires and educates businesses and organisations to take positive action for increased, inclusive, and accessible workplace training for all.

Its 2023/24 Employer Audit is a unique scheme which validates the employers’ activities, explores their future plans and commitments, as well as examining their approaches to quality, social mobility, diversity and inclusion.

From an impressive list of 180 members, GMI Construction Group was one of 120 to meet the Gold Standard.

As well as offering and promoting apprenticeships in levels 2 to 6 in such disciplines as quantity surveying, technical construction, procurement, corporate responsibility, design, HR and the built environment, earlier this year four GMI apprentices joined Leeds City Council’s Apprenticeship Ambassador Programme, visiting schools across the city, speaking to students at career fairs, assemblies, and attending classroom advice sessions and in 2024, four new GMI apprentices will be selected.

As a signatory of the Care Leaver Covenant, it has also launched its own bespoke Construction Cares Programme, delivering employment opportunities and employability support, including a three day DIY programme offering care leavers hands-on experience and training in construction-related jobs. The initiative, which has already resulted on one care leaver joining as an apprentice, was piloted in Birmingham and Manchester and is to be rolled next in York and the North East.

Claire Preston, head of responsible business at GMI Construction Group, which has offices in Leeds, Manchester, Birmingham, and Teesside, said: “Many organisations aspire to have 5% of their workforce in ‘earn and learn’ schemes, so to have already exceeded that is testament to GMI’s commitment and determination to bridge the skills gap and encourage a more inclusive and diverse workforce.”

Mark Cameron OBE, Chief Executive at The 5% Club said, “Our Employer Audit scheme recognises the efforts of all those employers who invest in their workforce through a broad range of workplace learning schemes.

“It is fantastic that in these challenging times so many are able to commit to the Employer Audit and to gain the credit for their efforts, and that the majority are striving to expand their schemes over the coming years.