NuGen Properties

Leadership council advocates retirement prevention strategies


Can’t afford to have you hanging ’em up yet…

Extending careers is one of the more original suggestions among a raft of familiar ones to help reduce construction industry costs.

The Construction Leadership Council (CLC) report, Creating a productive environment for UK construction, says that implementing its recommendations could improve UK construction productivity by 25%, saving £45bn a year on industry spend.

The lead author of the 88-page report is Hannah Vickers, chief of staff to Mace chief executive Mark Reynolds. Reynolds is also the industry-side chair of the Construction Leadership Council (CLC).

The biggest money-saving proposal is planning reform, which is outside the control of the construction industry. The report reckons that £11.3bn a year could be saved from total UK construction costs if planning permission was given more quickly, returning to 2010 rates for infrastructure and housing.

The second biggest proposed money saver is wider adoption of early integrated teams, which the report reckons could yield 12.5% cost saving across all projects within infrastructure and buildings by 2035, totalling £8.1bn savings.

Other suggestions include more offsite construction (saving £2.8bn a year) and extending careers, to get people to join the industry sooner and retire later (saving £5.4bn a year).

“We need to focus on managing the shape of the workforce ensuring that there are roles for those nearing typical retirement age that enable them to play an active role in a productive construction industry through lecturing or mentoring our next generation,” the report says.

“For our new entrants we need to recognise the skills they bring as digital natives and fresh perspectives on our sector, giving them the chance to influence and not simply learn.”

Richard Robinson, deputy chair of the Construction Leadership Council and UK chief executive of AtkinsRealis, said: “Improving the construction industry’s productivity offers the UK one of our largest economic opportunities. If we can build faster, at a reduced cost, we can spur growth and job creation across the UK – delivering the places and infrastructure our communities want and our economy needs without delay.

“At a time when construction costs and the complexities of planning policy are rightly under scrutiny within the UK, this latest report from the CLC lays out the scale of the opportunity and sets out a roadmap to partner with government to help us realise it. This isn’t just something that benefits our industry – it’s something that could be transformative for the entire country.”

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