One month on, the industry is still smarting from the OFT’s accusations of bid rigging. Building calls on all contractors, clients and consultants to join the stand against corruption and to show the OFT that the industry is serious about cleaning up its act
F ive weeks ago we launched Rebuilding Trust, a campaign to restore clients’ faith in the industry after the Office of Fair Trading accused 112 contractors of anti-competitive behaviour. Since then we have been talking to you, the industry, and working with you to find the best way to show clients that they can have faith in the tenders they receive.
What we have learned is that some people feel a code of conduct, as was originally suggested, could be too much, too soon, and that a series of pledges would be the best step to take.
Although this does not rule out the formulation of a code in the future, the consensus is that pledges for contractors, clients and consultants are the best way the industry can show it is united in addressing the problems the OFT’s report has so clearly identified.
So … with a month to go until the named companies must submit their responses to the OFT we want as much of the industry as possible to sign up to the pledges. We will then present their names, and the pledges themselves, to the OFT at the end of June to show that construction is prepared to start putting things right.
Read on to see which firms have signed up, what they have signed up to, and what the OFT itself has to say about the campaign …
As a contractor I pledge that I do not condone cover pricing. I also pledge that, to my knowledge, staff at all levels are aware of the company’s anti-corruption or ethics policy and are trained to recognise anti-competitive practices. I will provide an anti-corruption or ethics policy when submitting tender documents where required.
As a client or consultant I pledge that I do not condone cover pricing and that I will take note of (although not necessarily favour) those companies that have signed up to support Rebuilding Trust.
“The OFT supports any initiatives aimed at improving competition compliance within the construction industry. We welcome the efforts, through initiatives such as that launched by Building, to rebuild and strengthen consumer confidence by striving for a genuinely competitive and well-functioning construction industry”.
Hanif Kara: Why i am supporting Rebuilding Trust
At a time when the construction industry has delivered some of the most challenging projects in the world, such as King’s Cross, the Emirates stadium and Heathrow Terminal 5, I support your endeavours with great optimism and pride in the industry.
With wide support, and the right momentum, we should produce the correct checks and balances to demonstrate transparency again. I believe these tools and campaigns like yours can, and will, rebuild trust and prevent the industry from tipping over to the other side, a side of economic gloom and negativity on global issue that the industry can do little to control. The press and champions of the industry can work from within on something we can control by example, effort and passion in a industry the effects the lives of everyone.
Adams Kara Taylor
Apollo Property Services
Bovis Lend Lease
Chase North Construction
Construction Clients’ Group
Construction Industry Council
Construction Products Association
Federation of Master Builders
Gardener & Theobald
Local Government Association
North Midland Construction
The Stephen Lawrence Charitable
Original print headline: "Rebuilding trust"