Project 13; Is the UK Construction & Infrastructure Industry ready?

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The UK’s Construction & Infrastructure Industry is experiencing exciting changes. More importantly, the industry is undergoing a period of positive transformation. Key industry players in partnership with government departments continue to build the most exciting and iconic projects to boost the UK economy. Naming a few;  Crossrail One,  Heathrow Terminal 5, Highways England (Smart Motorways) are being delivered to benefit the UK economy. High Speed 2, heralds in another significant infrastructure investment. Therefore, it is important to ask the question;

Is the UK Construction & Infrastructure industry Project 13 ready ?

Project 13 is an initiative recently launched by the Institution of Civil Engineers and the Infrastructure Project Group. Most importantly, the initiative has the backing of the Treasury. Successful implementation of the the initiative will result in a more effective and engaging way of working in the industry. Also, increased emphasis on the importance of  tangible outcomes  and how they will be achieved. As the identification of tangible outcomes from infrastructure has been somewhat lacking in the past.

Project 13 – A New Way of Working

Project 13 seeks to establish a new approach – based on an enterprise. Up until date, the construction/infrastructure industry has constantly delivered projects under rigid contractual arrangements. Resulting in waste of resources, lack of cost savings and lack of collaboration.

An enterprise is defined as an integrated organisation, aligned and organised to deliver better outcomes and benefits for customers from infrastructure investment. Enterprises are more effective in bringing through the right skills and new technologies in infrastructure needed to deliver the right outcomes for customers when set up correctly and collaboratively.

Project 13 – 5 Key Principles

Governance – Defining outcome and value

Organisation – Teams co located with common systems

Integration – Effective teamwork

Digital Transformation – Digital strategy/new business models in place

Capable Owner – Owner functions integrated within the delivery team

5 Key Principles working together

5 Key Principles


Over the next few months I will be writing and facilitating discussions in more detail about the 5 key Project 13 principles. the principles provides space for business transformation in the Construction & Infrastructure industry.

Effective Stakeholder Engagement in UK Construction & Infrastructure Industry

By | Stakeholder Engagement in the Construction/Infrastructure Industry | No Comments


Five tips to ensure effective stakeholder engagement at the onset, during and at the end of a construction or infrastructure project.

  1. Seek clear direction from client and work in collaboration to achieve effective stakeholder engagement

A robust purposeful  relationship between client and contractor is an essential requirement to achieve effective stakeholder engagement. Working cohesively as a team with a common goal should yield immense success both internally, within the teams and externally with stakeholders. In some cases, the client requires the contractor to and engage with a specific set or number of stakeholders, leaving some hand chosen stakeholders to be dealt with directly by the client. It is important that this is clarified at the onset of the project.

      2. Get to know who your stakeholders are

As a contractor establishing and setting up a construction site in a new area, the earlier you set out to determine who your stakeholders the better. A colleague of mine described it as “determining what you are up against”. Proactive ways to determine who your stakeholders are include; liaising with the client and having access to the project communications plan, liaising with the design team as there is a high likelihood that they may have a detailed list of stakeholders. This may however require updating. Identifying stakeholders is an ongoing process to be undertaken during the entire duration of the project.

     3.  Identify influential stakeholders from your stakeholder list and establish robust rules of engagement

This should be done as early on as possible or at commencement of the project, these stakeholders could include statutory agencies, regulators and key decision makers. Proactive engagement with influential stakeholders  encourages collaboration. Collaboration  serves well to alleviate or minimize issues that might result in delays as the project  progresses. Invite yourself to their business meetings and similar events, this creates visibility and they are confident that you are keen on building a relationship with them.

     4. Preempt changes to the construction/infrastructure project and be ready to work with your stakeholders to make things happen

Preempting changes, as part of the overall Change Management process is key. As soon as a change is being considered and is likely to be implemented it is equally important to consider how this will be presented to stakeholders. The rationale is to maintain the established level of trust as stakeholders sometimes  may feel they have been deceived if a significant change is not relayed to them in a timely manner.

     5. Readily promote the benefits of the project

A proactive way of promoting the project and gaining stakeholder buy in is to promote the benefits of the project. Benefits that might include regeneration opportunities in the area of influence, tend to be of interest to stakeholders. The tendency is that stakeholders become a lot more tolerant towards any disruption experienced as a the project progresses.