HS2 invests in future talent

Karl Talbot, 28, from Birmingham has joined HS2 as an apprentice.

HS2 has welcomed more young talent into the business with the appointment of 20 new apprentices. 

The new starters – aged 16-28 – have joined HS2 at office and site locations between Birmingham and London with apprentices combining work and study over a two-year period

The move comes as the company strives to upskill the next generation to play their part in delivering HS2 and major infrastructure projects of the future.

This year’s cohort includes college leavers, university graduates and individuals who were already in employment, but in roles that offered limited career progression.

Since HS2’s apprenticeship programme began in 2017, all candidates who successfully completed the two-year programme have been offered permanent jobs supporting HS2’s construction. 

Karen Davis, HS2’s head of talent and development, said: “HS2 Ltd’s apprenticeships attract hundreds of applicants each year, and this year we’ve seen a significant uptake in career movers, which shows the desire to retrain and develop new skills is an attractive proposition for people of all ages.

“Getting to play a part in Europe’s biggest infrastructure project, and the recognition that we invest in the long-term development of our workforce, were cited as the main reasons for candidates wanting to join HS2.”

To date, HS2 has welcomed more than 950 new apprentice starts, putting it firmly on track to meet its target of creating 2,000 apprenticeships. 

As construction gathers pace, the breadth of apprenticeship programmes HS2 provides has expanded. 

In addition to roles in project management, engineering and quantity surveying, HS2 has created new roles this year in cyber security, land referencing and health, safety and the environment.

Karl Talbot from Birmingham, who is 28-years-old, had worked in hospitality for 11 years before joining HS2 but felt it was time for change and is now studying for a Level 4 apprenticeship in cyber security.

“I dreamed of the opportunity to build a career in an industry that I’m passionate about," he said. "The cyber security apprenticeship really stood out, as technology is constantly evolving, with unlimited learning opportunities and challenges.

“I chose HS2 as I knew this would be a massive opportunity to work for such a vital part of England’s future infrastructure; it’s going to be one of the country’s pinnacle achievements.” 

HS2’s annual recruitment drive to welcome more apprentices into the business will begin again in February 2023.

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