Supporting Our Communities
WJ are part of the local, national, global, industry and countless other communities, not to mention our own community within WJ. In each of these communities, we have a responsibility to support and respect them to the best of our abilities, whether that is delivering large scale projects safely or just being a courtesy to the community we are passing through.
To do this we invest a great deal of time and resources into health, safety and wellbeing, ensuring all our employees go home safe and well, recovering the support they need.
Also, going beyond this and providing training and opportunities both for our employees and for disadvantaged groups throughout the UK who are looking to progress in their career.
Through our Thinking Community initiative, we also support communities throughout the UK, delivering various projects such as playground markings, work experience, sponsoring football teams and supporting many other causes.
Safety is our number one priority, everyone should go home safe and well. This means ensuring our people are exposed to as minimal amount of risk as possible and are able to manage their work life commitments without compromising their Health, Safety and Wellbeing.
Improving safety is a collaborative exercise, which is why we encourage collaboration with others and sharing our lessons learnt and at the same time listening and learning from theirs.
We have cultivated a culture within WJ where we continually question and encourage our stakeholders to challenge us on our safety and safety values.
This involvement compels innovation and led to the development of our award winning SOS System, recognising the importance and value of workforce and stakeholder engagement in Health and Safety.
We also care greatly for their wellbeing. This is why we have MHFA, well-being working group and flexible working.
Our commitment to protecting our workplace is appreciated throughout the industry, and as a leader in our sector we aim to collaborate with our partners to ensure our thinking is transmitted throughout the industry and ensure the safety of everyone.
People are the lifeblood of our company. WJ believe that by treating people with fairness, inclusion and respect we enhance our core values of Safety, Delivery, Innovation and Community. This creates an atmosphere in which ideas can flourish and we can work together to meet all ours and our stakeholders needs and deliver a safe and efficient highways network.
We are continuously encouraging our people to grow both professionally and personally. Providing many opportunities with annual investment in training standing at over a quarter of a million pounds.
Our industry faces a chronic skills shortage. Infrastructure is often seen as rough, heavy and not necessarily an attractive place to work, yet the truth could not be different and there are so many opportunities at all levels within WJ. We see ourselves as a microcosm of the industry.
There are our core jobs of making our highways safer by applying lines and safety surfacing, but there are also; supervisors, managers, directors, manufacturing, technicians, chemists, administrators, accountants, mechanics, fabricators, electricians, vehicle designers, driving instructors, training, commercial, surveyors, marketing, business development and many others, even sustainability folk.
This is a company and industry of opportunity. It’s inclusive and works with disadvantaged people, ex-armed forces, ex-offenders, but also we have been developing a number of close relationships with education centres across the country, and creating several schemes that encourages the younger generation to consider the highways industry as a serious option we create long-term opportunities for less advantaged groups through our apprentice schemes, NVQs and other specialist training.
As a business with sustainability at its heart we understand that business has a duty to contribute and leave a positive legacy. We feel a very close connection to the communities we operate in and are always looking to be of service in any way possible.
Our Thinking Community initiative is the process we use to contribute to wider society by providing opportunities for training and employment, supporting careers events, having STEM ambassadors and working with charities and other NGOs. In addition to this we have facilitated days out for children with special needs, fundraising for charities and even a birthday party for a police officer with a surprising passion for road markings amongst many others.
The importance of contributing to wider society can be seen from the very top of the organisation with Martin Webb and Wayne Johnston, WJ’s two largest shareholders, taking an active role in our Thinking Community initiative, which also supports employees throughout the business with their own community efforts.
Our value chain is also our community. A community in which we can work collaboratively with to bring about better societal benefits and becoming responsible businesses in the Highways Industry. A significant part of this is ensuring Modern Slavery is tackled and never observed within our supply chain.
We also take measures to understand the impacts of the material we use making sure they are properly and ethically sourced as well as trying to use as locally as possible and giving chances to SMEs.
We have a calculator which measures the carbon footprint of our thermoplastic ingredients, hence, all of our thermoplastic products and have shown by swapping materials, we can reduce up to 81% of our carbon footprint in our manufacturing services.
Besides that, we are also incorporating social value into our procurement processes, we also collaborate sustainably with our value chain, from our traffic management partner HW Martin to our clients like Kier in many ways to promote being sustainable businesses.
There are many forums, working groups, and committees on sustainability within the industry, nationally, and globally that we sit on and contribute to on various issues, ensuring we are part of the positive changes accumulatively we can achieve as a collective.
Our company’s purpose is for the public and people. Without us, roads would be unsafe to travel on. And so, we care greatly for the community that is the public. We do this not only by guaranteeing the utmost safety for road users but also through a customer centric strategy.
We ensure their safety and wellbeing with the quality of our products and services. As well as making sure our operations are completely safe for them when we are on-site. This is the core to our health and safety policy.
However, as we are not as customer-facing as our clients, we care for them through the areas they live in with Thinking Community. As part of Thinking Community, we are raising awareness on this as well as carrying out initiatives for road users. For example, we are giving STEM lessons to young primary school children as well as help them understand more about road usage, the industry, as well as various opportunities for their future as part of the road industry.
We do this also to make visible the road workers, to show that we are part of their communities as well as they are ours. Similarly, the road users are part of other communities that might not use our road services, but we do care for them as well. This includes donating to the homeless, providing opportunities for ex-militaries, creating green spaces, etc.