Although we are marking National Women in Construction Week because it’s important to raise awareness of the fantastic work women carry out in the sector, we do so against the backdrop of continued under-representation and gender disparity. According to the Office for National Statistics women account for just 14% of the UK construction specific workforce, despite women comprising half the UK population. What’s going on?
We’ve been chatting to a selection of the Ian Williams’ female team to get their views.
Development Manager and Sales & Marketing Director from 1st April
Amy joined Ian Williams in 2010 following 15 years’ experience working for large project management, high-tech manufacturing and construction businesses. Her role encompasses managing all aspects of development, including bid management, new business and marketing, and thanks to a deep understanding of the sector, Amy has successfully led the acquisition of major accounts in the UK’s largest private and public sector. She is also a published author of erosh’s Sensitive Contractor Guide, and a member of the NHMF judging committee, We asked Amy what she feels are the main barriers to gender equality.
Head of Finance, and Finance Director from April 1st
Following graduation in Politics and Sociology, Jayne trained to be a qualified accountant and joined Ian Williams in 2008 as Financial Controller. In 2014, she chose to move into an operational role and spent five years as a General Manager and then Operations’ Director for Response Maintenance within our business. This experience gave her real insight into the performance and activities that lie beneath the financial performance. Returning to a central role in 2020, Jayne become our Head of Finance, also looking after IT and digital transformation.
Debra joined Ian Williams following a successful career in international retail operations working for big brands like IKEA and TK Maxx in roles such as Customer Contact Director, Commercial Manager, and Head of European Risk Management. Her experience in the high volume, low value transactional markets of B2C, taught Debra how crucial genuinely great customer service is, why as a business, you have to do what you say you will, and how service delivery is about delivering what people want and need, not what you think they want. All of these insights and skills were instantly transferable to our B2B2C supply chain and we were delighted when Debra joined us as General Manager in 2021.
Lucy Edwards, who is undertaking a Higher Level 4 in Construction Quantity Surveying Technician with us and City College Plymouth, recently won the prestigious Building Plymouth Construction Technical Apprentice of the Year Award 2023.
Painter and Decorator
After 10 years in the beauty industry, the 2020 lockdown gave Katie the opportunity to reflect on her career. She had always been interested in painting and decorating, and decided to move into the construction sector, joining Ian Williams in September 2020 as a painting and decorating apprentice. Since then, Katie’s confidence has grown, along with her knowledge and skill as a painter and decorator to become a valuable, integral part of the delivery team and she has won several industry awards along the way.