CECA works closely with its members to advocate policies which reflect their key concerns. Our policy publications can be found here. If you are a CECA member and would like to get involved in our policy making process please e-mail CECA Director of External Affairs Marie-Claude Hemming.
The Construction Sector Deal
The UK Government has recognised that construction is vital for economic growth, job creation and improving our communities.
£600m of public money is being invested in the UK’s infrastructure this decade. Building on this, Government and industry have come together to address the long-standing productivity challenges of our sector.
Historically, the sector has underperformed due to an out of date business model which prevents capital investment in our businesses, and in skills and innovation.
To this end, CECA has worked with the Construction Leadership Council and others to find solutions. Progress has been quick, with construction included in the first wave of Sector Deals identified in last year’s Industrial Strategy White Paper. The Construction Sector Deal sets out a vision for the future and a plan to ensure it happens. Yet, in order to ensure success we must work closely together as an industry and with local and national government, education providers, organisations and the wider public. The UK Government have committed to a series of actions to support our sector and the expectation is that these are matched by delivering on the commitments industry has agreed to undertake.
If done right the Deal will transform our sector, addressing procurement challenges, developing new technologies and investing in our future skills. The Construction Sector Deal was published on 5 July 2018. CECA is working to implement it and is consulting with members on its provisions.
Health & Safety
This must always be industry’s top priority and this year is no exception. In 2019 we will be rolling out the next phase of Stop. Make a Change, a national site stand down day to focus on working together to build a healthier safer industry across the whole construction sector.
We will also continue our work to prevent accidents happening with Forward Tipping Dumpers.
The UK infrastructure procurement process can be extremely lengthy and costly for CECA members. To this end, following the publication of our procurement policy report in late 2016 and frameworks policy report in 2018, we are taking forward a series of workstreams aimed at streamlining the procurement process for our members.
In 2019 CECA’s procurement work will have two streams. The first will focus on procurement between supply chains, the second, on the issue of inappropriate procurement (for example all-risk, lowest cost contracts). Both these pieces of work will have a strong SME focus.
Procurement between supply chains
CECA’s work in procurement to date has focused on driving change in the way our customers procure and pay. However, we also believe that civil engineering contractors should work towards best practice within their own supply chains. Such best practice could include for example, early engagement and collaboration.
We will also work closely with Project 13 to avoid repetition of work and to apply relevant learning.
CECA members have long raised concerns over contractual conditions between customer and contractor. The aim of this piece of work would be to formalise these concerns to take forward in our lobbying.
If you are an SME and would like to be involved please contact CECA Director of External Affairs Marie-Claude Hemming.
CECA welcomes the roll-out of devolved bodies across England. We are focusing on developing our relationships with Transport for the North, the Midlands Engine and Transport for the South East. Our workstream seeks to ensure that as these devolved bodies gain powers over investment in infrastructure, CECA develops relationships with them that are equivalent to those for major national infrastructure customers. We are also lobbying for positive outcomes of the PR18 review of rail expenditure in England, Wales and Scotland and of the second Road Investment Strategy in England with any uplift in investment reflected in the Barnett consequentials for Scotland and Wales.
The CITB is reforming, introducing substantial changes to its operation and governance. During this process, CECA will work to ensure the voice of its members is sustained and enhanced as part of the CITB’s restructure and that the reformed body is valued by civil engineering contractors. The above reforms will see CITB move away from the management of card schemes. This will impact on the CSCS and CPCS and it is vital that CECA members retain the ability to oversee and influence the management of industry card schemes. Developing our people is vital for the long-term success of our industry. To this end we are continuing our seminars and leadership & management training, as well as our training and development support and Fairness Inclusion and Respect work. We will continue to lobby Government and the IfA to ensure that businesses paying apprenticeship training levies receive the funding for apprenticeship training they are entitled to in order to increase the number of apprenticeships offered. We will also continue to monitor the impact of Brexit on our industry and address the challenges with Government where appropriate. At the same time, we recognise the need to develop the next generation and are focusing some of our resources on schools and young people engagement and the promotion of detailed career pathways in civil engineering.
Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs)
The Civil Engineering Contractors Association represents the full range of UK infrastructure contractors, from the very largest multinational companies through medium-sized and regional firms down to smaller specialist and local companies. A majority of CECA’s membership are small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs).
CECA’s research indicates that the majority of the issues that have an impact upon the industry affect companies equally, regardless of their size.
However there are a number of issues that are of particular importance to small and medium-sized members.
For this reason CECA continues to provide continuing support to members to address these concerns. In recent years this has included working with the Cabinet Office’s Crown Commercial Representative for SME firms to help the government to understand the concerns of smaller civil engineering companies.