The Ocean Housing Group has successfully delivered a six-month programme designed to support its female employees in finding their career ambitions and confidence.

The programme, named StrongHer, was developed by independent leadership coach, Nicola Skorko, in collaboration with Ocean’s group director of people and culture, Nikki Forward. It helped participants build leadership skills and created a supportive environment for them to set their own goals and values in the workplace.

15 women within the Ocean Housing Group took part, representing a variety of experience levels from head of services to administration roles, and new starters to long-serving staff.

Forward said: “Following commitments made in our Gender Pay Report, we are looking to provide opportunities to support the progression of women at every level here at Ocean. We have a good gender balance overall in the organisation, though the current structure sees fewer women in more senior roles.

“Due to the nature of the construction industry being more male-orientated, and often the demand of juggling work and family life, many of our women lack confidence in setting out what they want to achieve in their careers. I wanted to run StrongHer to give those women a voice and provide them with the motivation to succeed.”

She added: “I am delighted with how the programme has gone. The feedback we have received from the participants has been really positive and has fundamentally impacted the way they think about their work aspirations. We hope to run the programme again, and already have strong interest from more female colleagues.”