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Prater Apprentices – The Next Chapter: Guy Mitchell

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About Prater Posted by Prater on February 4th 2020

What initially attracted you to the construction industry?

In my previous employment, I felt I lacked focus or any type of progression and as such, didn’t feel fulfilled. I was working on the same day-to-day tasks, without much of a focus on my future. I really wanted to change that and, knowing friends in the industry, I could see the opportunities they were exposed to and I wanted to be part of it!

Following the journey of your apprenticeship, working in each department, what was it about the Trainee Quantity Surveyor role that appealed to you? 

I worked over several roles throughout the course, from commercial to onsite – and honestly, this one was the perfect fit for me. The role involves a lot of numeral skills and daily communication, which suits my personality - getting to work with the team and making key decisions on projects is so rewarding to me.

What responsibilities do you have to undertake for Prater to ensure works go as planned? 

With the support of my mentor, I administer the main contract and commercially manage the subcontractors. Communication and detail are absolutely key in this industry, especially when it comes to budgets and costs. I’m constantly liaising with all parties within the supply chain, to ensure accurate costs are provided, projects are delivered within the budget specified, and our supply chain partners are able to deliver materials within the costs outlined. It is a very practically minded and engaging role where organisation and attention to detail is vital.

Are there any interesting projects you’ve been able to get involved in during your time at Prater? 

London City Airport – it’s such a huge undertaking, with the airport quadrupling in size to accommodate an additional 6.5million passengers per year by 2025. It’s one of the largest aviation project Prater has ever worked on, so some day in the near future, when I take off on a flight out of that airport, I’ll be able to look down and say, “I had a part in that.” It is an immense feeling of pride.

What has been the biggest challenge or misconception for you in the industry? And how has Prater helped you overcome that? 

Before joining the industry, I had no idea about the number of roles and work that goes on behind the scenes before the work can even start on-site. I have a good understanding and appreciation for that now.

Before the apprenticeship course began, starting from scratch of course, felt a little bit intimidating. However, in only a short space of time, I felt I was growing both professionally and personally with new skills, new ways of working and learning from different people. It is incredibly rewarding. I’ve had a fantastic Learning and Development team behind me at Prater, and a brilliant mentor in my current role who helps me address and overcome any challenges and become more independent in my role.

What would you say to anyone looking into joining the construction industry? 

There are so many roles in this business, you will find something that suits you. Don’t let misconceptions from outside deter you! There are stereotypes surrounding the construction industry, and they are extremely uninformed ones. Whether you’re more design and administration focused, or you’re keen to get your feet on a site, there is something for every type of person. It would be a huge missed opportunity to overlook this sector.

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