Winner: Social Impact Kickstarter Scheme, Pareto FM
Sponsored by: EMCOR UK
In a sector that struggles to attract young or diverse talent, Pareto’s success in this category comes from showing how it can be done. The outsourced services provider partnered with the Kickstart Scheme and recruited 30 young people (Pareto only employs 200) with £500,000 of investment. Pareto also deliberately hired a range of people with protected characteristics, creating opportunities for people who wouldn’t ordinarily get them.
Kickstart started for Pareto when the government set out to create a scheme that would boost the opportunities for young people between 18 to 24 on Universal Credit to get experience in real businesses in the hope of assisting them with future employment. It offered employers full funding of employee costs for six months, with employers tasked with taking these young people on a journey, assisting them to gain valuable experience and preparing them for future employment at scheme’s end.
Pareto deliberately hired a wide range of people with protected characteristics, resulting in a group diverse in terms of gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion, gender identity and neurodiversity.
The company invested £500,000 in these Kickstart scheme recruits, seeking to bolster the long-term prospects of its ‘kickstarters’ by ensuring all of them:
- are given a free laptop
- have a professional headshot taken
- have their CV written for them
- receive two-weekly therapy from Mary’s Charity
- complete Level 2 Health & Safety at Work course with formal certificate
- are given a £25 voucher to buy new shoes for interview
- are provided with healthy food options at induction
- are offered the chance to join the Pareto skydive in the summer.
Pareto wants to specifically focus on how it helps its kickstarters at the end of their time with the company. Overall, 30 people in total have gone into full employment through the scheme, with one additional job role of Kickstart Manager created. Diversity-wise, the representation has been 53% women, 4% Trans, 56% ethnic minorities, 10% neurodiverse, 100% aged 18-24 and 100% on Universal Credit.
Best practice learning point
The key learning was that this was all achievable. Pareto says it achieved its Kickstart goal by spreading the workload across several areas of the business so that no individual current Pareto manager is individually impacted. It was also achieved by hiring a dedicated Kickstart manager.
In addition, working with the scheme has shown that young people want opportunities and the chance to show what they can do. It’s also shown that the government will support the sector.
‘I have felt like a sponge with all the information I have taken in and knowledge gained through my experience so far. In my first week, Dele did a fantastic job explaining to me the ins and outs of facilities management and the specifics of the TFM contract Flutter has with Pareto. I now have a solid understanding of the hard and soft services Pareto provides, how contracts between clients work and how Pareto manages subcontracts on behalf of the client.’