Women inConstructionMarcy Holt

In honour of International Women’s Day, we are shining a spotlight on some of our brilliant female employees who are in roles that may be considered as traditionally male. We have asked six of our employees about their experiences at Lancer Scott and within the construction industry in general. Here we talk to Marcy Holt who is a QS with the company.

Have you always wanted to pursue a career as a QS?

Definitely not – in all honesty I didn’t know what the role was until after I accepted the job! No regrets though!

 Do you feel there is still a stigma around women working within construction?

As a whole I generally don’t feel treated any differently, though there have definitely been comments (mostly from middle aged men) whilst on site which would likely be viewed as sexist or inappropriate.  Most also assume I’m an architect or an interior designer when I arrive on site, and when I’m asked my job in everyday life, everyone is always notably surprised.

 Tell us a little bit of what a typical day at work involves.

Each day is very different, though throughout the week there’s a variety of meetings – e.g with sub-contractors to agree monthly applications, on site with internal team to discuss project/progress for application submission/any variations, on site with client to report on progress/variations/final account figures, internal office meetings to anticipate margins on current jobs/upcoming enquiries.

 Do you think more needs to be done to encourage women to pursue a career in the construction industry?

I think a lot of women assume that the construction industry only encompasses labour trades, rather than the surrounding roles, so yes. Also, at uni, for a course that has a couple hundred enrolled, I could probably count females on one hand!

I also think perhaps careers in construction as a whole (including males) should be encouraged as opportunities are often not presented in education (definitely not in the private sector anyway)

 What has been the most surprising part of being a woman working in construction?

To be honest I’m quite surprised by how much sometimes this gives an advantage, and by sometimes how much this can have a disadvantage – I’ve had some rather different experiences when dealing with different clients and sub-contractors!