The change means two top jobs in Laing O’Rourke UK combined into one

The head of Laing O’Rourke’s southern England and Wales construction business has been moved to lead human resources at the contractor, as the firm slims down its management.

The move, which is a further part of the senior management reshuffle revealed by Building last week, will mean Mark Richardson takes up the vacant role of human resources director for the firm’s Europe Hub. He had been business unit leader for construction South and Wales.

The changes, confirmed by a company spokesperson, effectively sees the two top jobs in Laing O’Rourke UK combined into one, with the former North and Scotland director Callum Tuckett put in charge of the UK mainland.

The spokesperson said the human resources role became vacant last year after former HR director Jane Falconer left “of her own accord”. However, a source close to the company said the departure followed a shake-up in the HR division last year.

The appointment of Tuckett, who came through Laing O’Rourke’s “Young Guns” fast-track management training programme, comes amidst speculation that he is being groomed as a potential chief executive of the business. The same source said: “Callum is a very very talented individual and a potential future CEO.”

Laing O’Rourke has yet to put in place a clear succession plan for when chairman and chief executive Ray O’Rourke retires, following the departure of chief operating officer Tony Douglas in 2009, who had up till then been set to take the top job.