Sector Focus: Public anxiety, Public contracts

Published on 17th January 2011

Article from: NICEIC Connections, Winter 2010-11, Issue 176

So far a lack of work has not been an issue for Fife-based contractor R.B.Grant despite the cuts. Owner and director Ronald Grant says around 70 per cent of its work – it has 42 employees and had a turnover of £2 million last year – is public sector-based, much of it for local authorities and housing associations. ” We have enough contracts to keep the workforce busy until the end of March, ” he says , “but I’m not sure what happens after that.”

But the business recently missed out on the contract to work on occupied houses. ” The way the contract was set up was the first contractor would get 70 per cent of the total job. We lost out on that; two other contractors beat us on price” he says . “Local authorities are looking at best price, rather than quality, as well as your history of carrying out similar contracts.”

While Councils are also putting in place policies to limit work to local contractors, Grant says there are more firms bidding for work, including those whose normal client base is the commercial sector.

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