Set of ‘Gold Standard’ for UK Construction Frames


“An executive can create a solid business strategy for their clients, managers and suppliers if they allow and govern an attractive amount of work, define fair procedures for how that work is assigned, and establish the ways in which performance is expected to improve over time, ”according to the report by Professor David Mosey of the Center for Construction Law at King’s College London, who conducted the review.

“A framework can also strengthen and integrate the pre-construction phase planning systems for each project and program of work, and it can improve the quality of information shared and used to support safe and efficient design, construction and operation. In this way, a framework provides a flexible and dynamic model for a long-term contract that enables the efficient and collaborative procurement of projects, work portfolios and pipelines from multiple projects. However, there are a large number of public sector construction executives in the market. The review participants illustrated how the potential of these executives is not always well expressed or understood and how they do not always succeed in achieving their goals, ”he said.

Professor Mosey made 24 recommendations to improve the functioning of construction frames, which he says together constitute a new “golden standard” for such frames in the future. The Cabinet Office approved the review’s recommendations for adoption in future public sector construction frameworks.

“Transformational change will only happen if terms of reference create aggregated and harmonized work programs, and if they attract new commitments for better value for money, efficiency, safety, social value, net zero carbon and value. for life, “said Professor Mosey. .

Experts in construction contracts and major infrastructure projects at Pinsent Masons have welcomed the findings of the review. Pinsent Masons contributed to the review.

Anne-Marie Friel of Pinsent Masons said: “The best executives we see, who consistently deliver the best results, are based on collaborative ventures between the contracting authority and its supply chain and include more ‘carrots’ than of “stick”. It requires smart leadership at all levels, as collaboration is not something you can do on your own. If you get the right balance, overly onerous contract terms become unnecessary, as a successful business based on repeatedly delivering the best results for the project is reward enough to drive performance.

Jonathan Hart of Pinsent Masons said. “Zombie Frames” – construction work for one-off projects purchased as a frame, where the buyer has neither the resources nor the intention to ask bidders to bid for additional work but requires the community of bidders devoting additional time and resources to more complex bidding processes – has long been a negative feature of UK industry. It is good to see that their harmful effect is now recognized. Hopefully this review will remind buyers, and their consultants, that the Construction Manual’s ambition is here to stay.

Nigel Blundell of Pinsent Masons said: “At the heart of the recommendations are the themes of using the framework for long-term working portfolios and ensuring that parties work together on the framework. In a time of change where it will be necessary to innovate and understand the evolving problems associated with the increased use of modern construction methods, net zero and the technologies to facilitate them, the increased use of data and implications of building safety, the commitments to use and share best practices between members of the framework is to be welcomed.

“The need to use frameworks strategically is key. This initiative will be successful if frame buyers realize that the frame can be used throughout its lifespan to improve value and drive continuous improvements. This will require public sector clients to commit to a number of key principles set out in both the construction manual and in project 13, so that the client is at the heart of the framework projects and exists a coordinated approach to design and construction. The recommendations that two-step purchasing, full lifecycle costs, and collaboration are important drivers of this approach.

“By establishing and respecting transparent pricing and mini-competition procedures, overall procurement costs can be reduced. Those who administer executives on behalf of clients must embrace these concepts, moving away from a low-cost, one-step bidding model to gauge long-term value and reward positive results. It will also be important to align the terms of project contracts with the appropriate risk sharing and incentive mechanisms rather than placing all the onerous risks on the contractors. Adopting these principles creates a structure for success, but the key to its implementation is that funding is committed to enable long-term projects to be carried out using this approach. Without funding, the benefits of the approach will not be fully realized, ”said Blundell.


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