Construction companies need to reposition and offer clients what they want.

A client’s feeling of utopia for a build project is having low touch management, cost certainty, exceptional communication and project management, stress-free timeous delivery, quality, and fantastic design – all packaged up neatly and delivered by a trusted partner.


From a construction company’s perspective, utopia is a negotiated contract, time to procure and plan, contractor led, design & build (D&B), talented consultants – with consistently great client and partner relationships.

So why is utopia rarely an option for either party from the outset?

 The traditional tender process can create:

  • Cost uncertainty – let’s face it, do provisional sums, contingencies and unclear design give anyone peace of mind when it comes to cost?
  • Contractors cutting resource and materials to the bone to create the lowest price
  • A cast of thousands to manage
  • A reduced timeframe due to lengthy tender processes
  • Reduced collaboration leading to complications in design and buildability

Where clients involve contractors early in the process, through framework allocations, direct negotiated works, or D&B projects, it works, – for everyone. Teamwork, responsibility, ownership and standing and falling together to create the best outcome for the client.

So here is where the shift needs to come to move to a happier and more efficient place, to change procurement and delivery strategies and lift the construction industry into a different space from where it currently sits.

There needs to be huge changes in confidence from clients, and understanding around the real benefits of a contractor/supplier-led approach. 

This can only come from:

  • Investment by contractors in business positioning and their service offering
  • The formation of strategic alliances and partnerships with consultants, architects, and partners – creating and packaging ‘the team’
  • Investment in client engagement – introducing the benefits of a new way of working
  • Demonstrating success through case studies and success stories – building confidence and demonstrating hard results in the form of time saved, cost certainty, design wins, sustainability, and pride in the result.

Companies that formalise and package this offer will win the business, creating utopia for everyone.

VIV's HOT TAKE: Construction companies need to build stronger business relationships now.

Viv Sutherland

Strategy Director


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