On Monday 8th March we saw the world celebrate International Women’s Day by showcasing the tremendous efforts of women and girls around the world, in shaping their vision of an equal future and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, highlighting the gaps that still remain in equality and encouraging to #ChooseToChallenge.
Following on from this important day, the Optimum Group, and many others within the industry, have continued their focus on women’s roles, for Women in Construction Week. Through a survey, carried out by recruitment firm Search Consultancy, it was found that more than two-thirds (68%), of managers in the construction sector, believe there is an ongoing struggle with the lack of gender diversity. However, the tide is now beginning to turn as clearly represented by the ratio of women within the Optimum Group.
To celebrate this week, we have been praising the amazing women who embody our business values across many departments, seniorities and roles. Each day, we have highlighted these individuals on our social media channels to share their experience of working in the industry and at the company.
Within this post, we will be recapping the stories from the fabulous women we have celebrated on social media but have saved some to share with you today. Opening with Estimator & Quantity Surveyor, Jenna Gibbs:
I started my career in the construction industry when I was 19 and have continued working in the industry throughout my 15-year career. I first started as an Accounts Assistant for a housebuilder where I gained my MAAT qualification. From there I progressed to the commercial department and became a Commercial Assistant. I then went on to begin my HNC in construction and became an Assistant Surveyor, once I successfully completed my HNC I moved on to become a Quantity Surveyor.
I then joined Optimum Combined Services as an Estimator / Quantity Surveyor in September last year and enjoy the role as every day is different and allows me to combine working in the office environment and also on site. In the construction industry, there are always new challenges and I enjoy meeting various new people.
The timing of International Women’s Day (& #WIC2021) coupled with our women in construction activity, was most fitting for the announcement of our new Receptionist, Stevie Stevens who started on Monday 8th. She has embarked on her first-ever role within the construction industry. She joins us after a career in both the Travel Industry and in Financial Services. Being a Mother to two girls Scarlet and Savannah, aged 7 and 4, Stevie is excited to start her new career with Optimum after being at home on Furlough during most of the pandemic.
We would also like to mention Emma Price a gifted plasterer who is currently working on our Morfa Road project with our Welsh team.
Optimum is very proud of the remarkable women mentioned above, and equally with the women showcased throughout the week to commemorate both occasions.
We would like to thank all of them for sharing their stories throughout the week which opened with Optimum’s Directors. a four-strong force that actually makes up a majority on our board. We spoke to Joanne Britton, Company Secretary & Co-Founder, Lisa Clubb Finance Director, Jude Davies Commercial Director & Sam Linton, HR Director. Closely followed by the amazing female Quantity Surveyors & Site Managers working within the business. Laura Weston, Senior QS celebrating 17 years at Optimum this month, Alisha Birkett Assistant QS, Luschia Evans Trainee QS and future Trainee Site Manager, Robyn Carpenter.
We moved on to the Procurement, HR & Compliance team talking with Jody Chidgey, Procurement Manager, Natasha Abrahams Payroll & HR Administrator, Liz Fox Compliance Officer and Haley Manning Admin Assistant about their roles at Optimum, their perceptions and experience with the construction industry.
Closing our week of posts were our two women who work within our Account Management & Estimating department. Joanne Jones & Fran Locke enlightened us on their individual journeys, qualifications and familiarity both in this industry and at the company.
Summarising a poignant and informative week, we have highlighted the importance of the roles our incredible women undertake within their respective departments. Optimum are proud of all their achievements and recognise the amazing job they do at work, whist often balancing the needs of a demanding personal life, regardless of their gender.
Our core values, as a business, aspire to equality across all groups and in every department of our company.
We are grateful for the commitment and work ethic of all our workforce, especially over the last 12 months through the challenging period. Without them, we wouldn’t be an Optimum team.