Building what matters, sustainably – 2016 Sustainability Report

Community engagement



At SNC-Lavalin, we know that we can make a difference in every community where we work. That’s why we always strive to leave behind a positive and sustainable legacy. Not only through the impact of our engineering and technologies, but also through project-related economic spinoffs, local employment and training, and charitable involvement.

Our success hinges on an effective and proactive approach to community engagement. We not only look at what local stakeholders can do for the project, but also what our client’s project can do for them.

This approach allows us to truly align project and stakeholder needs and interests. It creates the conditions for engaging respectfully with each other. Together, we find solutions to issues that are important to and generate benefits for all. This includes ensuring that our solutions help communities achieve their social and economic development goals.

A focus on sustainable development

Our vision is to work with clients to implement, whenever and wherever possible, a sustainable development strategy for each project. In part, this means looking for engineering solutions that contribute to sustainability. Our power, oil and gas, infrastructure, and mining and metallurgy experts seek sustainable solutions throughout a project’s lifecycle.

Sustainable development also includes engaging with the community and key stakeholders in a meaningful way from the very outset of every project. The objective is to ensure optimal local involvement and benefits at every step. Our best-in-class Local Resources Development Initiative (LRDITM) helps us do just that. Today, the LRDITM is considered a best practice for stakeholder relations.

LRDITM: a shared-value approach

Our LRDITM program enables clients to demonstrate social responsibility by sharing the value generated by their projects  with local rights-holders, governments and other community stakeholders. It allows clients to meet their own needs while making the economic and social development of host communities a priority. 

The LRDITM helps:

  • Empower and improve the capacities of local workers, companies and communities 
  • Address both client requirements and community expectations with regards to the socioeconomic benefits stemming from large-scale projects
  • Maximize opportunities for communities’sustainable development while reducing project costs by relying on a local workforce
  • Optimize socioeconomic synergies between a project and local labour, the local private sector and the communities

Strengthening clients’ social license to operate

Clients have identified our LRDITM program as a key driver of their projects’ success. The LRDITM helps them obtain and strengthen their social license to operate at the project’s outset. It serves as a key differentiator and competitive advantage at a time when the need for resources and the influx of capital are at their peak. As the project moves into the operations phase, we gradually transfer this knowledge and these skills to clients.

As an integral part of a project’s sustainability and social responsibility framework, the LRDITM allows us to pinpoint and address social issues and opportunities at all project stages. In turn, this creates new possibilities for both the project and sharing value with the community. LRDITM strategies also enable us to avoid social hazards and minimize other risks during project execution.

Key components

Our LRDITM services and solutions are grouped into three main pillars that address operational objectives.


How LRDITM works

Our customized LRDITM program kicks into action at the beginning of a project’s construction phase. We start by assessing local workforce skills and business capacities to develop a tailored training curriculum. Our specialists build strong relationships between project managers and community representatives to maximize employment and outsourcing opportunities. 

We then break the program down into the following operational approaches:

Enhancing a project’s social acceptability

An LRDITM program benefits all partners. 

For local communities, it:

  • Provides employment opportunities and supports the entry of young people into the labour market to promote pro-poor growth ; 
  • Creates a pool of semi-skilled/skilled local labour 
  • Strengthens local small/medium enterprises (SMEs) and regional supply chains 
  • Opens training and earning opportunities for women 

For clients, construction and operation costs are significantly reduced through local employment and procurement. Companies gain better visibility by optimizing collaboration with local communities and authorities, the private sector and other key stakeholders. Projects are also developed in compliance with internationally recognized best practices and standards in local development. Ultimately, our LRDITM program increases the social acceptability of private initiatives.

LRDITM history

Since 1994, we’ve successfully integrated our LRDITM program into major projects for a variety clients around the world, including:


Developing talent in Saudi Arabia

Through our community development program, we’re investing in Saudi talent, generating opportunities for local enterprises and helping develop the wider community.

As a key employer in Saudi Arabia since 1991, we actively support the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 of building a thriving economy and providing exciting career opportunities. We believe that helping help clients with industry-specific training programs tailored to their unique activities across all phases of a project is the best way for all to succeed.

Our approach

We take a holistic, three-pronged approach to community development.

Our employees

  • We invest in our employees by developing their technical skills and mentoring them so that they can in turn add value to our clients’ projects.

Our clients’ employees

  • We assist our clients in creating their own in-house training programs and applying the latest technologies and techniques to train their employees to the highest standards.

Local workforce and enterprise development

  • We increase employability and facilitate small and medium-sized enterprise development in the local communities of our large projects through our Local Resources Development Initiative (LRDITM) program.

Vocational training

We know that investing in our employees not only gives us a competitive advantage, it’s also an investment in the future of Saudi Arabia.

For this reason, we’ve partnered with the Saudi Petroleum Services Polytechnic (SPSP) to provide technical training to hundreds of our employees. They graduate from the two-year program with certified and accredited core vocational skills, an understanding of

the petroleum services industry and specialist skills in technical areas.

Our trainees are offered practical, hands-on training in one of six technical specialty programs following the completion of the academic skills program: mechanical, electrical, instrumentation, welding and pipe fitting. And our commitment doesn’t end in the classroom. When graduates leave the program for their project assignment, our management team mentors these new employees to ensure further career development and advancement.

Our training programs are accredited by City & Guilds, an internationally recognized qualifications organization, helping individuals develop their talents and abilities for career progression. The curriculum includes English, math, electrical, instrumentation, process operations and commissioning.

We’re committed to supporting ‘In-Kingdom Total Value Add’ through our training facilities in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia, with plans to establish local training facilities in other regions of the country. 

Leadership development

We’re committed to enhancing the productivity and full potential of our local employees through structured leadership development and mentoring programs.
For example, SNC-Lavalin Fayez Engineering (SLFE), a joint venture between SNC-Lavalin and Zuhair Fayez Partnership, recently launched USUS. This Saudization high-potential development and incentive program helps develop and retain essential Saudi leadership talent through training and mentoring.
Local workforce and enterprise development

Our clients’ major capital projects in remote areas often require a community development solution that includes localization as well as improves local and regional supply chains and reduces project costs. We provide the program infrastructure and experience needed through our Local Resource Development Initiative (LRDITM).

Our LRDITM program strengthens the employability of local workers and ensures ongoing skills matching between jobs and trainees for all contractors involved in a project. Our experience in working with contractors makes us uniquely qualified to provide this service.

As part of the program, we can also establish an enterprise

development program for SMEs to facilitate local procurement between contractors and local businesses, helping reduce construction costs on capital projects and benefitting the local economy.

Operations and maintenance training 

When clients require a custom training program for employees, our Global Training & Simulations group builds a program specific to the context and skills needed.

Our training solutions include the latest tools and technologies while requiring fewer trainers and smaller training centres. Access to our simulated environments allows operators to train while a facility is under construction and to be ready to work as soon as the plant is operational. This enables clients to start production faster.