Marie Errington, office manager, speaks passionately on why all companies should uphold best practice

Hodgson Sayers is always looking for ways to enhance its people and improve and benefit the communities in which we operate. So, looking back, the Considerate Constructors membership seemed a natural choice of progression for us.

The Construction industry has always suffered from negative stereotypes and a poor image. It has had to contend with old fashioned viewpoints and has gained a lot of bad press over the years but I believe with the help of organisations including Considerate Constructors Scheme (CCS) that tides are now turning and perceptions are starting to change for the better.

CCS is a non-profit making, independent organisation, founded in 1997 to improve the image of the construction sector.  It sets standards and promotes a code of Considerate Practice which is designed to encourage best practice. The Code comprises five fundamental parts and basic expectations for registration with the scheme. They include care about appearance, respect the community, protect the environment, secure everyone’s safety and value the workforce.

The scheme also encourages companies to think about how they are perceived, it pays particular attention to a number of areas that have raised confusion or caused frustration. One of which is based around the principle that ‘first impressions’ count and emphasises the importance of having a first class physical appearance when on-site. Such a culture encourages pride amongst the workforce and helps to tackle negative perceptions of the industry held by the general public.

It supports businesses like ourselves to strive for continuous improvement and provides a portal to share knowledge and ideas via the Best Practice Hub. It provides verification of achievement by means of independent assessment, as well as a method for benchmarking.

The CCS helps to raise awareness across the workforce focusing on topical subjects and tackling sometimes difficult issues through its Spotlight on Campaigns. With its most recent campaign focused on air pollution, it raises awareness of the impact of air pollution and provides the industry with advice on tackling the issue.

It also encourages education through its e-learning courses which are easily accessible and provide knowledge of the Considerate Constructors Scheme, its Code of Considerate Practice and wider industry issues.  This method of learning has proved both convenient and user friendly for Hodgson Sayers and is a tool which we will continue to utilise and roll out throughout 2018.

Our target is to make continuous improvements across all our sites through the continued commitment of CCS champions including SHEQ manager, James Rolt and operations manager Peter Condren, along with co-operation from our workforce, SHEQ committee and wider stakeholders who work in conjunction with the Considerate Constructors Scheme and its Code of Considerate Practice to improve the image of the industry.

We are committed to being at the forefront of this movement, promoting sustainability, encouraging opportunity and attracting talent into the industry.  At the same time, we also hope to inspire other businesses to take pride in their communities, care about their outputs and consider the legacy they leave behind.