The construction industry has improved the way it treats workers in four areas this year, according to the 2004 key performance indicators.
The KPI results, published by Constructing Excellence's Respect for People programme, indicate that there have been improvements in equality and diversity, salary, occupational health and people development.

The number of companies obtaining Investors in People status increased over the past year from 16.7% to 19%, while salaries have continued to increase.

The median gross weekly wage is now £425, a rise of 16% over the past two years.

Companies also reported an improvement in job satisfaction, with a 1% reduction in staff turnover to 7% over the past 12 months.

The number of companies bringing in an equality and diversity policy rose 2% to 46%.

Dennis Lenard, chief executive at Constructing Excellence, welcomed the results but warned that the industry's record on safety had to improve.

He said: "The industry's performance on health and safety is a concern. We need to provoke mass behavioural change on safety."

n Housing construction companies are now more popular, with 86% of customers satisfied with their services compared with 81% last year. Overall customer satisfaction with construction consultants (architects, QS and surveyors) rose from 42% to 49% this year.