US-based consultant plans to recruit 500 additional UK staff

Crossrail - 'Elizabeth' tunnelling machine

US-based consultant CH2M Hill has pledged to invest £65m in its UK operations and to recruit 500 additional staff in the country.

Business secretary Vince Cable hailed the announcement as a “great vote of confidence” in the British economy.

CH2M Hill has traded in the UK for 20 years and expanded significantly in 2011 with the acquisition of UK engineer Halcrow. It currently employs 3,300 UK staff.

The new jobs will be created across the firm’s infrastructure divisions including nuclear; transportation, tunneling and earth engineering; water; environmental services and industrial & advanced technology.

CH2M Hill is working on High Speed 2, Crossrail, Thames Tideway Improvements and the decommissioning of former fast reactor research centre Dounreay.

Lee McIntire, chairman and chief executive officer of CH2M Hill said: “Following the acquisition of Halcrow and its integration in to CH2M Hill over the last year, I am delighted to be able to announce this significant investment into the UK’s labour market with the creation of 500 new jobs this year across a range of high skilled engineering and technical roles.

“I am especially proud that we will be playing such a major role developing future British engineering talent with our graduate, apprenticeship and internship programmes.

“The UK remains an attractive place to do business and today’s announcement reflects our commitment to the UK. With the British Government’s clear commitment to deliver new infrastructure and renew aging infrastructure, I am hopeful we will be able to build on this investment today in the years ahead.”

Business secretary Vince Cable said: “The creation of 500 new jobs is a considerable investment into the UK market and is a great vote of confidence for the highly skilled engineers here in Britain.

“Building on our strengths in areas like manufacturing, including engineering, will be crucial to our economic success in the years ahead. Today’s announcement supports our aim of ensuring that the UK can compete with other economies at the highest level by raising the numbers of skilled engineers.”