Women now make up around 37 per cent of those taking up employment within the construction industry directly from Higher Education in the UK, according to an encouraging statistic published by website Go Construct.
As with many gender-stereotyped roles, historic attitudes have often discouraged women from choosing a career path in construction. However this upward trend provides evidence that misconceptions about construction are gradually changing, leading to improvements in workplace diversity as more women choose to pursue a career in the sector.
The breadth of talent and resources that women can bring to the industry could play a key part in ensuring that our built environment is able to better reflect society as a whole, and with real opportunities for career progression it is an industry worth considering for many women.
While this statistic is indeed a hugely positive sign, it is clear that more work needs to be done in terms of reducing the gender gap across the industry as a whole.
Despite making up over half of the UK population, just 14 per cent of those employed in our construction industry are women, with only 3.9 percent of the UK’s 1.5 million self-employed female entrepreneurs operating within the industry.
While the previous ten-year period has seen an uptick in the number of women moving into other traditionally male-dominated sectors such as manufacturing, defence and vehicle repair - as well as the scientific and technical sectors - a 2021 report from Digital PR agency Reeboot found that construction was still the lowest ranking UK industry in terms of female recruitment.
Additionally, a Randstad report published in 2020 revealed that almost three quarters of 4,200 female UK construction industry workers polled had faced incidences of gender discrimination in the workplace.
However, for some female entrepreneurs, being women in a traditionally male-dominated industry has proved to be far from an obstacle. In fact, rather than viewing the lack of female presence as a hinderance, focus on individual presence and qualities has led many female led SME’s to thrive within the industry.
Entrepreneur Jas Kaur Saimbhi, Co-owner of London based quartz worktops broker Quartz Kitchens, has said: “Being a successful female-led company has certainly differentiated us from our competitors. Our clients range from residential home owners, BTL Landlords, all the way through to Commercials and Corporates. Our unique personable approach in really taking time to understand our customers has led us to not only happy clients, but exponential growth off the back of recommendations and word of mouth.”
“My business partner Sonia and I both have a keen eye for detail, as well as a real passion for style, fashion and interior design. We see building our business almost as building a community, offering consultations, advice and providing insights on the latest trends within the industry. We offer visual insights of our quartz kitchen worktops through our Instagram platform, which is fast growing, as well as top tips through our online blog”.
While some women may find entering a heavily male dominated industry rather daunting, Jas and Sonia view this as a rather exciting opportunity. At a time when people were spending more of their days at home than ever due to the pandemic and remote working, they spotted an ideal opportunity and launched their business in 2021.
Sonia Bharadwa, Co-owner of Quartz Kitchens, said: “While some may think it’s risky to start a business at such an uncertain time, we believed in our products, proposition and our passion in what we do to bring our new venture to life”. Many residents are now choosing to invest in their home environment, creating more attractive, comfortable and practical spaces in which to spend their time. We were in the right place at the right time and are delighted with how it is going so far.”
The business has gone from strength to strength, attracting clients from across the residential, industrial and commercial sectors and gaining an impressive 5 out of 5 rating on Google based on positive customer feedback. In just a short space of time, Jas and Sonia have built a large portfolio of clients, as well as creating links with many interior designers, architects and builders, many of whom have become repeat clients.
Jas added: “We are so glad we took the opportunity to launch our business when we did. We love working with each other, and there is no better feeling than hearing from happy customers and seeing all of their kitchen construction projects come to life. We’d definitely encourage any women who are considering starting a business within the construction industry as a whole to take the plunge and go for it.”
Issued by: Jas Kaur Saimbhi
Telephone: 02080 682047
Email: [email protected]
Issued: September 2022
Quartz Kitchens operates across the UK in London, Surrey, Middlesex, Berkshire and Essex, working with industry leading wholesalers and retailers in the stone industry to ensure it sources the best quality kitchen worktops at unbeatable prices.
Specialising in quartz, marble, granite and porcelain work surfaces, all projects are protected by a minimum 5-year warranty (subject to T&Cs), with an 18-month workmanship warranty with all projects.
The team doesn’t just match quotes – if you find a cheaper official quote for the installation, Quartz Kitchens will beat this for you by 5 per cent (subject to T&Cs), with a typical, straightforward project taking just 5 working days to deliver.
You can read reviews from Quartz Kitchens’ satisfied customers here.
For more information on Quartz Kitchens and its suppliers, or if you’d like to request a quote or book a visit to its Brentford showroom, visit https://quartzkitchen.co.uk/. The website also offers in-depth, helpful advice on choosing the right type of work surface to suit your needs.