County Down firm, Graham is one of a select group of UK construction contractors to sign up to a nationwide pledge to support women who are going through the menopause.
Through the Wellbeing of Women’s ‘Menopause Workplace Pledge’ the company commits to providing comprehensive support and guidance for females experiencing the impact of the menopause.
These includes issues from simply normalising the conversation, providing trained Menopause Advocates and access to external professional resources.
It comes as the organisation behind the scheme, Wellbeing of Women, revealed that while women make up nearly half of the UK workforce, around 900,000 have quit their jobs because of the challenges they have faced while going through the menopause.
This is despite these individuals being at the peak of their careers.
Now Graham is taking action to ensure women experiencing the effects of the menopause are not only supported and encouraged to remain within the sector, but have the opportunity to fully develop their careers in a nurturing environment.
Graham has also partnered with the award winning, world renowned ‘Balance’ App, which will allow women to track their symptoms, access personalised expert content, download health reports and share stories in the online community.
Hollie Cregan, Graham’s head of Inclusion, Fairness and Respect, said: “Whilst construction remains a male dominated working environment women entering the industry are already breaking down barriers and overcoming a legacy of challenges.
“At Graham our core values are founded on equality and diversity, and we want to attract and retain female talent within a great business that provides fantastic opportunities for development and progression.
“In joining this national pledge, GRAHAM is committing to recognising how women are affected by the menopause, how it impacts them in the workplace and to taking actions that make a real difference.
“For years menopause has gone under the radar undiscussed in workplaces and in society, seeing many suffer in silence but by talking openly and positively about this stage of life we are supporting staff and ridding that stigma around menopause.
“We’re creating discussion and normalising what is a natural stage in a woman’s life.”
Graham’s announcement to join the pledge comes after it was placed 41st in the Top 100 Most Inclusive Workplaces Index 2022 by the National Centre For Diversity (NCFD).
Ms Cregan added: “What we do to promote diversity in the organisation is not just a box ticking exercise, it is a built-in element of our operations that will help mould a much more diverse business and sector. Being ranked in the NCFD’s Top 100 Most Inclusive Workplaces Index 2022 tells us we are going in the right direction but we will continually strive to be so much more.”
Graham is a privately-owned company that specialises in the delivery of award-winning construction, civil engineering, interior fit-out, facilities management and investment projects.
It has reported “strong and sustainable” financial growth in its latest published accounts for the financial year (up to March 31 2022) as revenue reached £948m.
This marks a £141.9m (17.6%) increase in the leading contractor’s turnover from the 2021 reporting period (2021 - £808.1m). In the same period, profit before tax was recorded at £19m – a 54% increase from 2021 (2021 - £12.33m) – while the corresponding profit before tax margin rose by half a percent to 2% (2021 – 1.5%).
The firm operates from a network of 23 regional offices throughout the UK and Ireland including Hillsborough and Belfast, and employs over 2,200 staff. Over 1,100 of these employees are from Northern Ireland.
Looking forward, GRAHAM has also secured a record work pipeline of £1.9bn, expanding its portfolio of major projects across the UK and Ireland, and earning selection to a number of leading national frameworks.