O’Brien and the Next Generation of Construction Workers – 2019 Placements

O’Brien Contractors are very passionate about giving new generations of construction workers the opportunity to spend time with us, to see what the construction industry is all about in a practical sense whilst they study.  Some of our work experience candidates haven’t made a final decision on what they want to do and work experience gives them a better idea about the work involved in various areas of the civil engineering and construction industry and gives them a better idea of the direction in which they want to go with their future career path.

We  operate an apprentice training scheme and we are happy to discuss our scheme with those who are dedicated, passionate and have a keen interest in growing and developing themselves within our company.  On average we provide 2 apprenticeship placements each year to support the next generation of construction specialists.

In 2019 we had 4 students who took part in work experience placements and we look forward to welcoming more during 2020.

O’Brien Contractors awarded SME of the Year at the 2016 Celebrating Construction Awards

Our commitment to the Midlands has seen us awarded a SME of the Year at the West Midlands Celebrating Construction Awards in Birmingham


With a long-established track record of delivering expert civil engineering solutions across the Midlands, we are proud to be named SME of the Year at the West Midlands Celebrating Construction Awards 2016.

We scooped the highly acclaimed award for investing in our people, focussing on improving customer satisfaction and adopting industry best practises across all areas of the business. We were also praised for our commitment to sustainability and maintaining an above industry record for health and safety.

Peter O’Brien, Managing Director, said: “A fundamental element of our success has been the commitment we’ve placed to the Midlands. We believe by focussing on the region, we can forge strong and long-lasting relationships with clients and our supply chain facilitating greater collaboration, essential in delivering projects successfully.”

Established in 1958, O’Brien has partnered with the region’s leading industry clients, including: Morgan Sindall, Aston University, John Sisk & Son, Kier Group and University of Birmingham.

Peter added: “It’s not just about consolidating your efforts into one area. We have continually invested back into the business so that we have a highly talented and knowledgeable team, operate the most efficient plant and technology, and benchmark against industry best practices, like Achilles BuildingConfidence – having achieved a 5-star rating in 2014. This regional award recognises the hard work and commitment of the whole O’Brien team.”

O’Brien Contractors launch work experience initiative for school-leavers


Leading civil engineering and groundworks company, O’Brien Contractors, has launched a work experience programme to provide school-leavers with an insight into careers in the construction industry.

The new scheme is designed to provide young local job seekers with practical experience and skills that cannot be taught in a classroom. It will also offer them a sense of belief, demonstrate that they can be valuable members of a working team, but most importantly, provide them with a passage into an apprenticeship scheme or employment.

The latest Government statistics have found that across the UK, 963,000 people aged 16-24 are not in employment, education or attending a training scheme, with 61% classed as unemployed. It has therefore never been more important to help younger people get a foot on the employment ladder, through work experience and apprenticeship schemes.

Tony Mitchell, Operations Manager, O’Brien Contractors, said: “The company has been fortunate to have great success over the years and we are keen to ensure we give back to the community whenever possible.”

“We have set up the programme to help and inspire young job seekers in their pursuit of employment. Employers look at experience gained when interviewing potential new members of staff and attending a work experience programme will make their credentials stand out.” said Tony Mitchell.

Each placement delivers high quality on-site experience related to the person’s training requirements. They are assigned to a site supervisor, who mentors them passing on the relevant skills, introduces them to the structure of working life and demonstrates the value of working in this sector.

At the end of the week, trainees come away with a genuine learning experience, highly motivated and a better awareness of their career aspirations.

Tony Mitchell, Operations Manager, O’Brien Contractors, said: “During the recession, 400,000 skilled jobs were lost in the construction industry and an estimated 400,000 are due to go through retirement over the next five years.”

“We feel it is crucial that the industry creates more schemes, like our work experience programme, to offer hands on experience to younger people at the grassroots level and get them interested in a career in construction.”

Louis Gray from Central Construction Training was the first pupil enrolled on the scheme and experienced a week on-site at the Accident and Emergency development at New Cross Hospital, Wolverhampton. Louis said: “I found the work experience programme very helpful and it gave me a better understanding of what I can expect from a career in construction.  I have learnt so much from my site supervisor in just one week and I feel inspired to continue developing my skills and apply them in a career in construction.”