Image credits: HS2

Following the success of its first youth unemployment scheme, HS2’s construction partner for the West Midlands, Balfour Beatty VINCI (BBV), is searching for more talented youngsters to join its Kickstart programme.

Fifteen young people from the region joined BBV’s Kickstart scheme earlier this year and they are now valued members of the team helping to deliver Britain’s new railway.

BBV committed to creating more opportunities for young people in the West Midlands, Warwickshire and Staffordshire and it is now recruiting for new roles, specifically ringfenced to those who are currently out of work, to join the team.

Kickstart is a Government funded initiative aimed at creating job placements for 16- to 24-year-olds who are on Universal Credit and at risk of long-term unemployment. It forms part of the Government’s Plan for Jobs campaign and is designed to support those who have been adversely affected by the pandemic. Placements are for six months and participants are paid a salary equivalent to the National Minimum Wage or the National Living Wage. The scheme has recently been extended to March 2022 and will be open to applications from employers and gateways until 17 December 2021.

Julie Venn Morton, HS2 Ltd’s Skills Manager for the West Midlands said:

“This is a fantastic opening for young people who are eager to get on the career ladder. Securing a paid placement on Europe’s biggest infrastructure project really is an amazing opportunity.”

Balfour Beatty VINCI’s new Kickstart placements show the breadth of opportunity that a career in construction can offer. The vacancies it is currently recruiting include engineering support assistants and administration support roles in HR, Finance and Resourcing. The jobs will based in Birmingham, North and South Warwickshire and Lichfield.

Shilpi Akbar, Head of Stakeholders and Communities at Balfour Beatty VINCI said:

“We’re recruiting for thousands of roles across the Midlands over the next two years, and we want to ensure that young people, especially those who are currently out of work, are given every opportunity to benefit and secure employment on HS2. 

“Our Kickstart scheme is a fantastic way to begin building your skills, confidence and experience and we hope that candidates will be inspired to consider a long-term career in the sector.”

BBV expects to be one of the biggest recruiters in the region over the coming years. It is continually strengthening its workforce to lead the construction of the 90km section of Britain’s new railway from Warwickshire into Birmingham city centre and on to Staffordshire. It expects to create around 7,000 jobs in total and is committed to ensuring that local people benefit.

The new Kickstart placements will begin in the autumn and the application process is now open. Young people who wish to apply and meet the specified criteria (16-24 and claiming Universal Credit) should speak to their Work Coach at their local job centre.

The design, construction, and delivery of HS2 is forecast to support 34,000 jobs right across the country. For details of all the latest opportunities with HS2 and in its supply chain visit hs2.org.uk/careers