ADComms is pleased to announce the hiring of six new female employees as part of the Women in Transport and Engineering programme in partnership with Transport for London, promoting greater diversity and representation in the UK rail engineering sector. Their considerable talents will help contribute towards ADComms delivery of major rail infrastructure projects.

How did we get here?

Research by Women in Rail showed that 16% of people who work in the rail industry are female but only 2% of females are engineers. This alone demonstrates that the industry needs to do a lot more to attract and develop female talent. As Women in Rail states, “as soon as you have diverse workforce, you have a productivity increase.”

ADComms was invited to take part in the Women into Transportation and Engineering (WiTnE) programme through its work with Transport for London (TfL). TfL works with its supply chain to address skill shortages whilst also focusing on under-representation in the industry.

How the programme works

By working together, we’re helping to create new employment opportunities and contribute to the economic regeneration across the UK. The WiTnE programme supports women of all ages and backgrounds who have struggled to start their careers in transportation and engineering sectors.

TfL works alongside the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and Smart Works as part of the WiTnE programme. All these organisations have their unique ways of removing barriers and supporting the candidates during and after the programme.

The DWP help find and introduce suitable candidates. Smart Works is a charity that helps women with interview preparations, including providing them with clothes for interviews and five outfits to wear to work free of charge.

After an information day and candidate selection meetings with participating companies, ADComms was pleased to accommodate seven fantastic candidates.

Working with ADComms

The initial programme was scheduled to last for two weeks, however, ADComms was able to offer work experience placements to seven of these women a two-month period. ADComms provided financial support to the candidates, helping them to continue their studies, commute to their work placements and support themselves.

The women worked alongside managers on the Deep Tube Upgrade Programme (DTUP), a project to design, install and maintain the new One Person Operation CCTV on the entire Piccadilly Line route. The candidates were able to shadow, learn and work on the DTUP project with mentors across ADComms.

After the initial two-week period, it was agreed that most of these women could continue their placements as they made meaningful contributions and embedded themselves into their projects. ADComms knew allowing them to leave after just two weeks would prove detrimental to their ongoing professional and personal development. Nearer the end of the programme, we were able to advertise the vacancies within the business. This allowed these women to apply for the roles if they wished.

From work experience to fully-fledged careers

Following their successful interviews, ADComms were delighted to offer Project Management Assistant Roles, PSM Support Engineer and Assurance Assistant roles to five women from the programme.

ADComms were also able to interview women who had placements with other companies on the WiTnE programme, safe in the knowledge they would be ideal candidates for other roles within the business. Upon successful completion of interviews, ADComms were pleased to hire one more person who joined as a Document Controller.

Without the success of this programme, ADComms would not have filled the vacancies as quickly. More importantly, these women may not have been able to start their career a rail and engineering environment.

ADComms and Transport for London are committed to increasing diversity and bring more female talent into rail sector, so will be partnering on more programmes such as WiTnE in the future.

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