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Presidential Breakfast sees industry consensus on the importance of Construction Playbook - but now we must embed it

09 December 2020

ICE hosted a timely virtual Presidential Breakfast on Wednesday with senior government officials who have led the creation and development of the Construction Playbook. Find out more here.

 Presidential Breakfast sees industry consensus on the importance of Construction Playbook - but now we must embed it

Following the launch of the government’s new Construction Playbook yesterday, which sets out new mandatory rules on how public sector bodies must engage with the construction sector, ICE hosted a timely virtual Presidential Breakfast with the senior government officials who have led its creation and development.

The Construction Playbook sets out improvements on how the public sector must buy from the construction sector by providing a single start-point of best practice. This will help ensure the public gets more of the infrastructure they need in a more effective and low carbon way. ICE has been closely involved in developing the Playbook, and welcomed its aim of delivering public sector projects ‘better, faster and greener’.

The roundtable event, led by ICE President Rachel Skinner along with keynote speakers Stephen Dance, Head of Infrastructure Delivery at the Infrastructure and Projects Authority, and Clare Gibbs, Director of Outsourcing at the Cabinet Office, brought together government and leaders from across the supply chain. The discussion focused on three broad areas – what does good look like; how do we make the Playbook stick; and how do we get to grips with factoring in wider benefits. Key points raised include:

  • Sitting at the heart of the Playbook is a quid pro quo – Government will change how it contracts, the construction industry will invest in driving improvement in delivery.
  • Ensuring a focus on the smaller contracts which go beneath the radar would bring benefit, and industry can also help government by stepping back from tenders that aren’t ‘Playbook compliant’. Focus on improving capability across public sector procurement is needed.
  • Rewarding innovation is something that needs championing as part of outcome-based procurement. There is much we can learn from other countries’ initiatives, such as Construction 2.0 in Hong Kong, which seeks to tackle similar challenges such as low levels of productivity and cost overruns on projects. ICE has examined some of the challenges in a paper exploring how to improve approaches to risk in the built environment.

ICE will be continuing the conversation around the Playbook in 2021, to see what progress we’ve made as it is rolled out. Join the debate on our Twitter @ice_engineers and on the Cabinet Office's Twitter @cabinetofficeuk.

You can also view the Cabinet Office video on the Playbook, which includes ICE President Rachel Skinner, below.

Read ICE Policy Director Chris Richards' blog on the Construction Playbook here.

If you are working in the construction industry in the UK, watch this interview with ICE's President Rachel Skinner and think about how you can start preparing for the changes that are coming.

  • Joanna Gonet, lead public affairs manager at ICE