Cushman & Wakefield has launched an initiative to improve access to work experience beyond traditional routes with the aim of helping people from a wider range of backgrounds gain their first exposure to the industry.
The +1 initiative ensures that any work experience placement in the UK business secured via a personal or professional connection must be ‘matched’ with a placement of equal length for an individual with no such connections.
The change in policy has been driven by Inspire, Cushman & Wakefield’s Diversity and Inclusion group. The firm’s HR team is actively managing a database of candidates without prior industry connections, collected through outreach activity and applications via a portal on the Early Careers website
The initiative is launching to coincide with National Apprentice Week, which has played an important role in highlighting alternative, non-traditional routes into the industry. Last year, Cushman & Wakefield’s own successful scheme saw apprentices taken on in its London and Birmingham offices. This year, it is expanding further to the Leeds and Manchester offices, with additional placements across two teams within Project & Development Services, widening the options available alongside Asset Services, Business Space, EMEA Capital Markets, Global Occupier Services, London Markets and Retail.
Watch to understand more about our apprentice scheme:
Kirsty Bannerman, Early Career Development Manager, Cushman & Wakefield, said: “Work experience is so important, firstly to expose people to the varied and rewarding careers available within real estate but also to strengthen future applications for apprenticeships and graduate schemes.
“We have had considerable success in broadening our entry-level talent but diversity takes many forms and there is always more that can be done. The +1 initiative is a practical change to make a positive difference in widening access to industry experience. Everyone benefits from removing barriers to entry and this is one of many programmes underway at Cushman & Wakefield to do just that at all levels.”
Cushman & Wakefield’s Inspire programme highlights and aims to promote diversity in many forms with working groups divided into six ‘pillars’: gender; work/life solutions; ethnicity and culture; LGBT; mental and physical wellbeing; socio-economic.