On Wednesday 14 February, we hosted the first of our engagement events for the new Construction Works Contractors commercial agreement – the largest procurement opportunity ever developed by CCS. The event also saw discussion of the 4-year Modular Solutions agreement, due to be awarded in summer 2018.
The day was split into two parts. The morning session hosted prospective customers, including government departments, arm’s length bodies, local authorities and other wider public sector bodies. In the afternoon, more than 150 representatives from interested suppliers packed into the conference room.
Both groups watched presentations by the Buildings strategic category team, and took part in an interactive session and a lengthy Q&A.
For each session, we used the interactive presentation software, Menti, to give attendees the opportunity to feedback on key aspects that will inform the development of the agreements. Each part also ended with a question and answer session featuring a panel of the Buildings team that are responsible for designing and rolling out the new agreements.
Details of the outcomes of the Q&A sessions and slide decks are now available on the CCS procurement pipeline pages for Construction Works Contractors.
Both sessions began with presentations explaining how the agreements will help to deliver on the government’s strategic priorities around construction, and setting out the huge opportunity the agreements represent for prospective suppliers.
Sam Ulyatt, Strategic Category Commercial Director, provided an overview of the work of CCS including the 17 different key areas of the Buildings pillar. Other CCS agreements including Project Management and Full Design Team Services and the forthcoming phase 1 of the FM Marketplace will dovetail with Construction Works to provide a full, end-to-end solution.
Sam also explained CCS’s policy priorities around small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), prompt payment, simplification and transparency through open contracting – all of which will be taken into account in the design of the new agreements.
‘There have been catastrophes in this industry. We need to pull together and put infrastructure back where it belongs.’ Sam Ulyatt
Sam committed CCS to being as open and transparent as possible in how it engages with the market, and talked about how CCS wants to work with customers and suppliers to develop agreements which serve the construction landscape as a whole.
Kevin Murray, Head of Property and Construction at CCS, went further into the detail of how the new agreement was being developed.
Kevin explained that CCS has been working closely with Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs on the launch of the department’s Fit Out framework – CCS’s first foray into on-site construction work. With CCS’s help, the agreement took less than 6 months to put in place – from contract notice to award.
‘We have structured our strategy around three main offerings: construction works, products, and services.’ Kevin Murray
Looking more widely at the public sector landscape for construction procurement, Kevin pointed out that there are going to be less frameworks in the market in the near future, creating some big potential advantages for industry and the public sector.
Again, CCS has been working cooperatively to develop the new solutions, including with the Construction Leadership Council and with King’s College, London. CCS believes that there is a need to link considerations of building construction with that of ongoing performance.
‘We consult with the Infrastructure and Projects Authority regularly. With the departments who have frameworks expiring, there is going to be strong demand to support the figures in the PIN.’ Kevin Murray
Offsite construction was discussed at length, with reference to it being at the forefront of the government’s thinking around delivering on the Industrial Strategy. Kevin also highlighted the potential importance of project bank accounts, using unamended, standard forms of building contract, and ensuring that strong focus remains on improving health and safety and the reinforcement of fair payment terms.
Kevin provided an overview of CCS’s relevant frameworks in the construction arena, including Building Materials. He discussed the importance of ensuring a pipeline of work would be in place, and that the progression towards greater use of offsite construction will be supported by the inclusion of commercial agreements for construction management. This will give customers the option to use main contractors to engage the off-site manufacturers, and for customers to contract directly with off-site manufacturers, with on-site assembly overseen by a construction manager.
‘There is a big focus in government now on value, and that is going to be at the heart of what we do.’ Kevin Murray
Find out more
If you missed this event – don’t worry. Due to high demand, there are further events being planned in Birmingham and London. Dates and times will follow.
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