I read with great interest your recent article on the possible formation of a trade body to work closely with the Office of Government Commerce (OGC) to deliver maintenance in the social housing sector (18 May, page 14).
While I agree that this specialist sector should have a voice, I am concerned that yet another trade body is not the way forward, and we should be working as one industry. I am also concerned about the preconception that big contractors are best and that smaller ones have nothing to offer.
It would be a mistake not to listen and learn from small organisations that are often more agile in reacting to clients’ needs and more innovative in their delivery, procurement, sustainability and service to the community. It would be a travesty if companies of all sizes were not afforded equal opportunity to shape the future of public sector maintenance procurement.
Councils and housing associations are looking to outsource their maintenance and capital expenditure, but I fail to understand why you say these integrated packages are less suitable for smaller firms – the work is mainly undertaken by them at present.
The changed in our industry has been driven by all shapes and sizes of company and it would be a mistake to exclude any of them. After all, it is smaller firms’ passion to embrace change that has driven the industry forward over recent years.
Tony Hyde, managing director, Thomas Vale