Celebrating social value success stories

Two apprentices wearing hard hats, work boots and high vis jackets on a construction siteSocial value is a key consideration for Sandwell Council when awarding contracts. This means looking not only at the cost of the work, but also the wider benefits that a supplier can bring to the local community – economically, socially and environmentally.

One great example of this is the construction of the new Midland Metropolitan University Hospital in Smethwick. The social value embedded in this multi million pound project has brought huge benefits to the region, particularly in creating jobs and apprenticeships for local people.

Two of these new apprentices are Radu Zaharia and Juan Perdones, taken on by one of the main subcontractors on the project, Flynn Interiors. Flynn has supported the local labour scheme from day one, working closely with Think Sandwell and the Working Together in Partnership initiative to ensure that job and skills opportunities benefit local people.

Radu joined in May 2020, introduced to Flynn by Think Sandwell when the company was looking for local labourers. Juan joined in December 2020, introduced by graduate site supervisor Andrius, who was himself recruited through Think Sandwell. Both were chosen for their proactive approach and positive attitude, and have proved to be reliable and valued members of the team.

Roisin Flynn, office manager at Flynn Interiors, says: “Radu and Juan have really stood out and gone from strength to strength. They are currently learning different types of fire protection under the guidance of our technical firestopping supervisor Alex Gushtenkov and project manager Alasdair Hoon. They are working towards Level 2 NVQ diplomas in Passive Fire Protection and, once those are completed, they will be assessed by IFC to gain an accreditation from a third party certification body.”

Radu and Juan are just two of over 150 people taken on by Flynn Interiors since April 2020, all part of the company’s ongoing work to meet their social value commitment on the Midland Metropolitan University Hospital project. To find out more about Sandwell Council’s commitment to social value and how it affects how contracts are awarded, visit our social value pages.