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Marks & Spencer Case Study

M & S logoMarks & Spencer commits to considerate construction

The Considerate Constructors Scheme has been running its Client Partnership for three years. This initiative was developed to enable companies who act as construction industry clients to become affiliated with the Scheme. The thought behind this being a closer working relationship between the client and the Scheme, ultimately, helping improve the standards of construction.

We spoke to Matthew Edgell, Construction Standards Manager of Marks & Spencer, the latest Client Partner of the Scheme, to find out his views on Client Partnership, the Scheme, and his hopes for the future.

How long have you known about the Scheme?
Since I first started to work in the construction industry (1997), I have been aware of the Scheme but it is only since 2009 that I have begun to understand more about the objectives and how projects are monitored.

How long have you been registering sites with the Scheme?
As a business M&S has included the registration of its projects within the Main Contractor Preliminaries document for over 10 years.

How did you hear about Client Partnership?
During a review of the CCS website and at a CCS workshop.

Why did you apply to become a Client Partner of the Scheme?
We wanted to offer our support to the aims of the CCS in a more focused manner, to be better informed so that we can better promote the CCS to our supply base.  We are keen to assist with maintaining and developing a consistent, high quality, independent construction project monitoring service. 

M & S photograph

What do you think will be the benefits to your company of becoming a Client Partner?
I believe that we will gain a valuable insight into the leadership and management of the CCS and have an opportunity to share our experiences and lessons learnt in a structured way for the benefit of the industry.

How will you ensure your contractors sign up to the Scheme?
It is a requirement in our Main Contractor Preliminaries document that all capital construction projects are registered with the CCS.  We also review all of our projects to ensure they are registered and what scores and comments they have received from Monitors.

In what ways will you help your contractors carry out their work, in line with the Scheme’s Site Code of Considerate Practice?
We completed an extensive review and updating of our Preliminaries document this year with the aim of ensuring that all aspects of the CCS checklist are covered and included within the price a contractor pays to deliver a project for us.  We also reference the CCS and the website in our project delivery process documents and encourage attendance at CCS workshops and seminars.

What challenges do you anticipate you will face with meeting the expectations of the Scheme?
The biggest challenges we anticipate are the same as those faced by other clients whose contractors are required to deliver projects in city centres, in live trading/operating environments with minimal space for site set up, storage and waste.

Any other comments about the Scheme or Client Partnership?
There are real synergies between the way Marks & Spencer delivers construction projects and the aims of the Considerate Constructors Scheme. There is also a significant overlap between our sustainability programme, Plan A, and a large number of the areas of focus within the Scheme. It is for these reasons that we are extremely pleased to have been accepted as a Client Partner and very much look forward to working with both the CCS and our contractors to assist to drive the improvement of the image of the construction industry.