Crofton, the consulting engineer with offices in London, Kent and Sussex, was a finalist for the Inclusion and Diversity Champion of the Year Category at the ACE Consultancy and Engineering Awards 2016.
The award ceremony took place at a gala dinner in the Grand Connaught Rooms in London’s Holborn on 24th May, with more than 350 guests from a wide variety of professions within the field.
Doctor Nelson Ogunshakin OBE, chief executive of ACE said:“The evening recognised the people who sit at the heart of our organisations, each and every one playing their part to deliver work of the highest standard.
Steven Hale, managing director at Crofton, comments:
“We were delighted to be short-listed. Our Diversity and Inclusion Strategy is intended to foster a culture of trust, altruism and respect toward others. It also seeks to enable easy access to opportunities for personal and professional development for all in alignment with Crofton Design’s brand values and corporate goals.”
Gemma Walters and Jackie White the office managers in the London and Kent office, say:
“We are frequently encouraged to be mindful of the diverse backgrounds of our colleagues. As the office managers for our respective locations (London and Kent), we organise regular diversity workshops for our staff to ensure we all have a better understanding and respect of other colleagues' backgrounds and differences. This makes for a harmonious working environment where people feel safe to be themselves, voice their opinions and have the confidence to collaborate.”
Client, Christopher Bib, of the Lewes District Council, also mentions:
“Crofton Design's commitment to diversity and inclusion is demonstrated across the entire lifecycle of the projects they are entrusted to carry out on our behalf. From the initial meeting, through to regular project touch points all the way to the soft landing phase, we are shown, through the numerous inter-actions with their staff, evidence that Crofton's cultural diversity plays a key part in their ability to deliver projects successfully. At Lewes District Council, we are pleased to say that this is aligned to our own values; this inclusive approach to working fosters local community cohesion and we see great benefits being associated with an organisation that is known”
Examples of Crofton’s diversity and inclusion in the work place include:
- Engagement with a local London school led to the employment of Daryl Curtis after completing his A-Levels. He is working towards a Crofton funded engineering degree on day-release to South Bank University. Daryl comments: “I knew that I didn’t want to stay in full-time education, but I was concerned that with limited qualifications and no work experience, I would quickly be rejected from potential employers. When Crofton offered me employment along with the opportunity to continue my studies, I was both thankful and surprised; where others may have disapproved of my situation, Crofton made working as a young engineer very accessible.”
- The Engineering Development Trust (EDT) is a charity running programmes to stimulate and encourage young people to choose a career in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Involvement with the EDT allows engagement with more young people with a similar attitude. Crofton works with schools in both Kent and London and a mentor from each office works directly with pupils to set up a relevant engineering project.
- Research confirms that the construction sector employs a particularly high proportion of workers over the age of 55, and those under 35 are often considered too young. Bearing this in mind, Crofton believes that young people represent a potent ‘diversity’ group. In the past 12-months in particular, Crofton has made a conscious effort to recruit employees from diverse backgrounds including engineering undergraduate placement students. At the age of 20, these young aspiring engineers have been given the opportunity to gain a practical under-standing of how the industry operates. Upon graduation, they will have already acquired a valuable year’s experience and thus will be appealing prospective candidates to employers.
The 13 ACE awards celebrate the best of the UK’s consultancy and engineering profession and showcase the remarkable work of ACE members and supporters across a variety of specialisms. The Inclusion and Diversity Champion of the Year award recognises an organisation working in the built and natural environment that has the foundation of diversity and inclusion, in which it values and embraces the benefits of a truly diverse workplace.
The organisations were judged based on their demonstrative narratives of why the D&I strategy was implemented and its connection to a broader business strategy. Additionally, the organisation is evaluated based on metrics, employee/customer feedback and case studies as supporting evidence to demonstrate the corporate ethos.