Seeing both sides- CHt and Equinixtrade talent

Following the success of a groundbreaking initiative two years ago, Crown House Technologies (CHt) and global data centre specialist, Equinix, have initiated a second talent exchange programme, with two apprentices from each business swapping roles over a six week period.

The four apprentices have spent time working in each other’s companies, to see both sides of client/contractor relationship. CHt is well advanced in delivery of the LD6 co-location centre in the Thames Valley, while Equinix is fitting out the nearby LD5 facility for its varied client base.

Alex Hampton, a CHt 4th year apprentice, gained his initial experience at the Heathrow Terminal 2A project before transferring to LD6 earlier this year. “I’ve learned a lot. Where my initial training at T2A involved a lot of modular work, the LD6 project is mainly ‘traditional’ hard wiring and electrical installation – wholly different but really interesting. The exchange has been a huge help in us understanding the programme from the client’s point of view.”

Brackley Lewin, also a 4th year CHt apprentice, followed a similar route to LD6, and echoed Alex’s thoughts. “It’s really interesting to see what work is required after CHt hands over a building - many of Equinix’s clients have quite specific requirements for their data installations, and although completely different to what we’d normally do, it’s excellent experience to understand how our initial work fits in and supports the eventual final structure. We’ve had great support from Scott Bell and the Group HC team, who have supported and advised us throughout.”

Scott Bell, Apprenticeship+ manager for Human Capital, said “Experiencing different work elements and locations is a vital part of our apprentices’ training, and the ability for each trade speciality to understand why and how specific things happen in each other’s roles is invaluable. Both sides have been pleased with the progress these apprentices have made, and it’s a credit to them, and the site teams, for the enthusiasm shown throughout the exchange.”

Zak Carroll, LD6 project leader, commented “This programme has only been possible thanks to the strength of our relationship with our client. It’s a unique opportunity for us to give our apprentices the experience in working in a different environment within a completed building, and from our client’s point of view, they will see how the installation team works.