The built environment is a central plank in global plans to stimulate post-pandemic economic growth. We are committed to building the highly skilled workforce required to deliver this unprecedented ambition.
We also recognise how our clients’ ambitions are shifting. Our teams must be ready to design and deliver programmes that are efficient and effective, but that also address the climate emergency, add value to communities and create a world that the next generation aspires to live in.
Setting human values to underpin our purpose
We have worked with our teams to examine what is important to us as individual professionals and as a business. We have tapped into the human side of our people to set out our three values:
- We love a challenge
- We are stronger together
- We bring out the best in everyone
These values are inherently inclusive. They underline the way that we work together and will now be brought alive throughout the business and our supply chain.
Global teams that represent the communities we serve
Our people represent the best global talent, ideas and experiences. But we must also work in our local communities to build capacity and understand need.
In the US, we’ve been working with multiple Oregon State agencies and the Federal Emergency Management Agency on the cleanup programme after the devastating Labor Day 2020 wildfires.
We lean on our colleagues around the world, drawing on this diverse thinking, constantly asking whether we truly represent the communities we serve.
Diversity of thought is crucial. It is not only ethnicity or gender, but how we think about things differently from one another, and bringing out the best in what we each bring to the table.
Linda Foggie, Executive Vice President and Thomas Lindemann, Associate Director
Making space to speak, to listen and to support
We have supported roundtable events encouraging people to talk openly about their experiences of inclusion across the business. In a year when working from home has become the norm, these conversations have helped us act on our values and listen to individual viewpoints.
Throughout the pandemic, we have put wellbeing at the front of what we do, protecting mental health using a range of specific tools such as the ‘R U OK?’ campaign.
Building deep links to drive inclusion and social mobility in our communities
Our work with communities is increasingly tailored to local need, creating programmes that help build opportunity for under-represented groups. These initiatives make us better positioned to respond to local needs.
In the UK, we partnered with the Social Value Portal this year to monitor and manage the impact we create during our commissions and in the Middle East we are developing our approach to in-country value.
In North America, we launched a new supplier diversity programme service that helps clients target spending across the local community and our programme in South Africa is supporting women and black-owned small enterprises as part of the mainstream economy.
We are committed to helping our clients, often through pro bono work, to find tailored solutions that deliver focused and specific social value and in-country value that directly impacts communities.