Improving productivity in construction to drive sustainable growth

A report from Mabey

Delivering projects on time and on budget is a challenge that has always plagued the construction industry. Yet productivity can be greatly increased with better collaboration across the supply chain.

Our experience, across multiple sectors working with contractors, subcontractors and the end clients, has taught us that it is not the sole responsibility of the end organisation to drive down costs and increase productivity.

This new report by Mabey reflects our experience and demonstrates new ways of working to boost this much needed productivity. This includes recent project examples across the UK which demonstrate the benefits of early contractual involvement across the supply chain, better risk-sharing, and digital engineering.

It also explores ways to drive diversity of people and skills, which will encourage different ways of thinking across the supply chain and enable the UK construction to reach its full potential.



One of the biggest questions facing our sector is how construction and infrastructure companies can become more commercially, financially and operationally secure. Tens of thousands of jobs, billions of pounds worth of investment and the increasing needs of a frustrated public are at stake. The answer, though, lies well within reach.

Our experience, across multiple sectors working with contractors, sub-contractors and clients, has taught us that it is not the sole responsibility of the end organisation to make the real difference. All contractors and infrastructure clients rely on a broad and deep supply chain of specialist organisations.

Each specialist is an expert in its field and a source of innovative engineering to deliver more quickly, safely and efficiently. The key is to unlock that latent expertise in the specialist companies and for them to adapt to better ways of working.

Calls for more collaboration, better risk-sharing, greater diversity and embracing digital engineering are not new but unless companies just take the plunge, it can be difficult to precisely evaluate the benefits and understand what is possible.

Those companies that are embracing new ways of working are now benefiting from lower costs, reduced risks and faster implementation, with less disruption and increased efficiency. Those benefits are being unlocked by expert engineers embedded in small and medium sized specialist companies who, every day, innovate, cut costs and reduce risks.

Across all sectors, this is a new way of working and we must all play our part if the country is to fully benefit from its significant investment in our industry. And all this is set against a backdrop of Brexit, the skills crisis, a weak currency and instability amongst some of the world’s biggest construction firms.

The challenge is great, but everyone knows the UK construction industry needs to change, quickly.

Juliette Stacey, Group Chief Executive Officer, Mabey

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