The challenge is to avoid complacency by continually redefining excellence

As an industry practitioner, my role within Constructing Excellence is to critically challenge the focus and direction of the team. Along with other industry colleagues, we aim to develop a programme that delivers the immediate needs of the industry as well as setting medium and longer-term challenges for continuous improvement.

My key involvement has been to support the engagement programme. This is fundamental to the success of any organisation seeking to improve performance in construction. The objective is to increase the awareness and involvement of organisations in the improvement programme, particularly SMEs. The aim is to create a network of best practice advisers to work with organisations in order to develop individually focused programmes aimed at performance improvement, and therefore business success.

I am also looking forward to becoming more involved in the regional activities of CE. In particular, I will be assisting in the development of the newly formed East Midlands Centre for the Built Environment. In my capacity as Board Member of CE, I will endeavour to contribute to the strategic focus of the centre.

As a leading construction organisation, Balfour Beatty has been engaged in improvement programmes for some time. Despite this, we recognise there is always a need to continue to improve performance in order to respond to the needs of the broad range of industry stakeholders. CE enables us to contribute to and gain from the pool of best practice knowledge and therefore set targets for improvement and understand the future direction of the business. This will assist us in continuing to be one of the leading construction organisations.

Constructing Excellence is a vehicle for unification. To date, the response to the challenge to deliver improvement has mirrored the generally fragmented structure within the industry. Consequently, it has resulted in a number of organisations seeking to address the unique needs of individual sectors of the industry. Constructing Excellence is building on what has been achieved to date and making use of the shared attributes that exist across the industry to implement best practice techniques and the introduction of new processes and technology.

The great thing about CE’s mission to deliver excellence is that it is an endless goal. The challenge is to raise the benchmark by continually redefining excellence. The organisation is beginning to engage with a much broader section of the construction industry and to facilitate the spread of knowledge and best practice. In doing so, it contributes to raising standards within the industry. It is also setting challenges for leading organisations in defining future working practices and processes. In this way, CE has made excellent ground on the way to fulfilling its mission, but by its nature, it will always be a work in progress.

  • From Balfour Beatty Civil Engineering, Andrew McNaughton is a CE board member focusing on engaging SMEs