BUILD Q1 2018 Bridger Steel Issue

Build Q1 2018 10 “In addition, we look to be actively involved in as many of these organ- isations as we can. Not only do we receive important information, but through these we also have the opportunity to influence the direction that the industry is taking.” Moving towards the future, there are interesting times ahead for the industry. There will also be many challenges which the firm will have to adapt in order to succeed, with Glyn mentioning the skills shortage within the sector, and also the lack of women and ethnic minorities involved in the industry. He talks about the firm venturing into new areas and encouraging others to get involved in the work of the company. “Regarding the future, we anticipate greater levels of development to meet the shortages in housing, and to facilitate improvement to key infrastructure. However, we also anticipate a greater future emphasis on development of brownfield land, greater investment in environmental protection and in renewable energy. There is a lot of uncertainty in the market at the moment and I think that in the short term, and perhaps ex- tending to the medium term, we could see peaks and troughs in demand. However, this is a scenario that has not yet come to pass and if anything, demand is increasing. “One of the key challenges that the industry faces are skills shortages. The industry has chronically under invested, particularly in the last 10 years. We now face the crisis of an ageing workforce and a lack of new entrants to the industry. Also, we are still a heavily male dominated sector and we need to reach out to the female population and ethnic mi- norities, another part of society that we are critically under represented.” In his concluding comments, after discussing what the future holds for the build industry, Glyn signs off by predicting what the future holds for Geo-Environmental, detailing the new ventures that the firm will undertake, and how its IT services will continue to benefit the company in the future. “Ultimately, our aim is to continue the steady growth that that we have had over the last seven years, whilst still aiming to maintain the special ingredients that make Geo-Environmental a great place to work. Our aim is to increase the amount of work we win in the Rail, Utility, Highways and EU markets over the next five years. “In order to do that, we will have to continue becoming more flexible and productive. Many commentators believe that the industry is on the verge of a revolution in terms of how its services are delivered, which will be IT driven. We need to ensure that we remain at the forefront of this revolution. “Through harnessing IT, we now have 60% of the workforce working from home for some or all of the week, which helps immeasurably with work- life balance for our staff. Whilst this is an important benefit, flexible work- ing has a much more fundamental role to play in the construction industry. It is my belief that efforts to drive greater diversity and inclusion within the workforce are not possible without it, and attracting all members of socie- ty into the industry will be essential for its long-term health and prosperity. Through harnessing IT, we have introduced cloud based project manage- ment systems, automated document templates and on-site applications, all of which have allowed us to increase our productivity so that we are delivering £800K more work with the same numbers of staff.”