Willmott Dixon has for a second time joined an exclusive group of companies in receiving Britain’s most coveted business prize; a Queen’s Award for Enterprise.
It is one of only six companies to be recognised in the Promoting Opportunity category of the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise for how its people are enhancing the life opportunities of others. It’s the second year for the new category and there have so far been only a handful of recipients.
Last year, nearly 80 per cent Willmott Dixon’s people took part in some form of activity that left a positive legacy, with almost 50,000 work time hours spent on activities aimed at improving the life chances of people. This equated to over 1% of staff work time devoted to supporting others, equivalent to £900 invested per employee and £1.95m overall.
Activities include mentoring pupils at schools, improving community facilities and working with disadvantaged people to get them into jobs.
Willmott Dixon group chief executive Rick Willmott:
“We have a purpose beyond profit which is to use the energy, passion and commitment of our people to strengthen the well-being of society beyond the buildings we create. Gaining recognition for that by receiving a Queen’s Award for Enterprise in the new Promoting Opportunity category is an achievement we are all proud about.”
Rick continues, “Feedback from our people survey shows that one of the things they like about working for Willmott Dixon is the opportunity to make a wider impact in communities through volunteering and getting involved with initiatives to improve the life chances of people not as fortunate as them. Through the Willmott Dixon Foundation, we aim to improve the life chances of 10,000 young people by 2020.”
The privately-owned company has been reporting on its social value investment through the Foundation since 2011, and has contributed activities worth over £10m since then – verified by third party organisation Bureau Veritas. Examples in 2017 include:
- Providing mock interviews to 1,471 young people
- Offering over 900 work experience opportunities
- Delivering workshops to over 32,000 students
- Working in prisons to upskills offenders
It’s the second Queen’s Award for Enterprise that Willmott Dixon has achieved; it won an accolade in 2014 in the ‘sustainable development’ category.
Her Majesty The Queen publicly announced the winners on her birthday, Saturday 21st April 2018. The awards, which have been going since 1966, are awarded to businesses for outstanding achievements.