Employer stories: PH Plasterers Ltd with Leeds College of Building

Leeds College of Building placement student hired after graduation as firm’s quantity surveyor

Company: PH Plasterers Ltd

Sector: Plastering, Metal Partitioning, Rendering and Floor Screeding

Location: Otley

Senior Quantity Surveyor and Managing Director, Neil Hendry, discusses how giving opportunities to higher education students can benefit businesses. He draws on his own experience of hiring former Leeds College of Building student Sinéad Clarkson. After successfully completing a work experience placement with PH Plasterers Ltd Sinéad was hired as a full-time quantity surveyor. 

PH Plasterers Ltd started as a family-run company approximately 40 years ago. It now has a team of over 30 plasterers. Neil has been in the company for 30 years and started his career as a Trainee Surveyor.  He encountered Sinéad when she completed a work placement while studying for the combined HNC/HND and NVQ Level 5 Higher Apprenticeship in Construction and the Built Environment at Leeds College of Building. Due to her mathematical abilities, Neil decided she would be an asset to the business.

Neil highlights Sinéad’s abilities and conscientiousness as key benefits in her role as well as a determination to achieve the best results. Her progression has been evident since starting in the company as she has been working her way up the ladder. As time progresses, she has been assuming more responsibility from Neil.

Neil states in his experience that a key benefit of hiring higher education students is that they adapt to the role quickly and can apply what they have learnt in college. A long-term benefit, as evidenced by Sinéad, is watching them progress in their role as they work their way up. In terms of encouraging and supporting women within the construction industry, Neil states that the construction industry should be on an equal plane and could benefit from more female workers. He recommends that other employers could look at ways to promote vacancies to women a lot more and that this is something that needs to be improved.