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From bartender to construction supervisor: Iman’s journey

How the industry can help upskill individuals through the pandemic


RMF is a social enterprise focused on social inclusion recruitment. The company supports candidates furthest away from the labour market, such as ex-offenders, ex-military, minority groups and the long-term unemployed.

It was through RMF that we met Iman. Iman joined the Perry Barr Residential Scheme project, where we are one of the Tier 1 Contractors working for Lendlease on the scheme with Birmingham City Council.

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Not long after starting on site, we worked with our supply chain to encourage them to liaise with RMF for any employment opportunities they had.

As a result, ALDGroup hired Iman as a traffic marshall and dumper operator. Since joining she has gone from strength to strength and has recently been promoted to supervisor.

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“My journey into construction has been a long, but amazing one,” Iman said. “I started with no prior tickets or qualifications in the construction industry. I’m now working on one the biggest residential housing projects in Birmingham, which is funnily enough the place where I had my first break.

“I had lost my job as a bartender during the pandemic so I decided to do something completely different so that I could increase my chances of employment. With the help of so many people believing in me from RMF, I was able to get the support to retrain as a traffic marshall and dumper/roller operator.

“A big thank you to everyone who has helped me get back into work!”

Since 2018, we have increased the number of social enterprises we work with by over 170%. Social enterprises are businesses that reinvest their profits back into the community – whether that’s to support an environmental cause or to tackle a social issue. Karen’s story is another great example of how partnering with businesses aligned to our values can increase our impact. Read more here.