Social procurement in the real world: How employment requirements unfold in construction projects
Paper in proceedings, 2019
In hopes of mitigating issues with segregation, unemployment and a lack of workers in the construction sector, social procurement and employment requirements are becoming increasingly popular. Albeit high on the policy and industry agenda, little is known of its effects for practitioners and the newly employed themselves, when they face these in practice. With an aim to understand how social procurement and employment requirements unfold in practice, what effects this has for construction practitioners, for the interns themselves, and for individual projects and organizations, 23 semi-structured interviews were conducted with practitioners and interns in three cases where employment requirements have been applied. The findings show that for practitioners, employment requirements place new demands on themselves as “receivers” of interns, which require personal engagement. For the interns, demands are set on how they should engage in their internship and to seize the opportunity, while same-time facing a risk to become overexposed for advertisement purposes if they perform well. For the construction projects a concern is raised regarding safety, due to the interns’ poor language proficiency. However, also positive effects are seen, such as improved team spirit among the project members and added value to the working life of the intern supervisors.