The Education Partnership Award: Viridor

Award Type: 

Longlisted for a Business in the Community Responsible Business Award 2018.

Action and Impact
Viridor, one of the UK’s biggest waste management companies providing services to more than 150 local authorities, finds it increasingly hard to fill vital engineering roles.

To address the problem, it is creating partnerships with schools to actively engage students in taking more interest in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects.  They are also encouraging students to consider careers that will help to change the perception of the waste sector. “As our business continues to evolve, we need to be prepared for this evolution.  Viridor has committed to developing a talent pipeline which aims to bring diversity, innovation and new skills into our business,” says managing director, Phil Piddington.

Business Class is a partnership between Viridor, its Education Centre at Ardley Energy Recovery Facility (ERF) and The Bicester School. It has also expanded to partner with Matthew Arnold School, to reach a total of 1,446 students a year. Through revision lessons, work experience weeks and facility tours, the company is inspiring those at key stage 3 and 4, particularly girls, to engage in the STEM curriculum and consider having a career within the waste sector.

For the business, employee engagement, profile and reputation within the local community are important, but it is ultimately developing a STEM talent pipeline for itself and the wider industry.