The Construction Leadership Council (CLC) have played a very important role throughout the Covid-19 pandemic through the provision of advice and guidance to both the UK Government and the UK Construction Sector. The CLC draws together business leaders from across the sector to identify how to promote solutions to meet the ambition of a 33% reduction in cost, a 50% reduction in project time, a 50% reduction in carbon emissions and a 50% reduction in the trade gap. Alongside this sector improvement agenda the CLC has provided Site Operating Procedures, Supply Chain Guidance and advice on approaches to avoid disputes as a result of the impact of Covid-19.
On Monday this week the CLC launched its “Roadmap to Recovery” which is a strategy to drive the recovery of the construction and built environment sectors, and through them the wider UK economy, following the Covid19 pandemic and economic downturn. Central to the strategy is a two year, three phase recovery plan:
Restart : increase output, maximise employment and minimise disruption (0 3 months);
Reset : drive demand, increase productivity, strengthen capability in the supply chain (3 12 months); and
Reinvent : transform the industry, deliver better value, collaboration and partnership (12 24 months).
The strategy goes on to explain how the CLC’s objectives are embedded in the plan to drive digital solutions, offsite manufacturing, lifecycle costing, procuring for value, skills, safety, zero carbon, innovation and fair practices.
The Roadmap to Recovery is an excellent blueprint for stakeholders in the construction sector to align their activities and behaviours as such a coordinated effort will be required to ensure that the construction sector, representing 8.6% of GDP, brings about the economic stimulus that will be required to recover from the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. It is essential that such a collaborative and intelligent approach is taken to ensuring that all of our organisations do what they can in nurturing the recovery of our sector and bring the levels of investment and output back to those that we enjoyed before the pandemic.
A particular area of great concern to me in the recovery of the sector is skills. I fully recognise the scale of the task in the sector’s efforts in recovering from Covid-19 and naturally some of those bigger issues will take precedence in taking forward the recovery plan however, I am very concerned that the strong commitment to our young people that our sector has always displayed will be overshadowed by the pressing demands of economic recovery. Sadly, we have already seen significant cuts to the funding infrastructure for our young people in the industry and many have been displaced by site closures.
Whilst we understand that the impact of Covid-19 is unprecedented we also can already see how young people and, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds, may find themselves locked out of the sector and its recovery without the essential pathways into it. In the face of the economic difficulties that we all face Efficiency North will continue to remain absolutely committed to the futures of young people on the various programmes of support that we provide which are all integrated into our framework procurement offer. Also, working with regional partners, we will continue to maintain our innovative training hub models to help those young people looking for a pathway into the construction sector.
One of the founding principles of Efficiency North is collaboration. In past years collaboration has promoted as a new relationship management approach and one that the more enlightened in the sector would embrace to move the sector onto new horizons however, in the new normal that we all live in, collaboration will become a way of life if we all want to see the sector and, the wider economy, recover in a post Covid-19 world.
Chief Executive, Efficiency North
Roadmap to Recovery HERE