In February 2017, the report into defects that led to the closure of 17 schools in Edinburgh was published. In response to this report and wider concerns about quality in the industry, the CIOB announced that it was setting up a Commission of Past Presidents to investigate the issue of quality in construction, which was launched at Members’ Forum in Cardiff. In that same month the fire at Grenfell Tower claimed the lives of 71 people.
Since the launch of the Commission, I have been privileged to meet and speak with professionals and leaders from across the industry about the issue of quality. Without exception everyone I have spoken to has recognised that there is an urgent need for change to the way in which quality is managed in our industry.
In October 2017 the Commission launched a Call for Evidence to better understand the behaviours that were promoting or preventing the delivery of quality on projects. The findings, which were published in Construction Manager Magazine earlier this year, captured the view of CIOB members, the insurance sector, other professional bodies and the public, and has helped us to identify the steps that we can take to improve the standards of quality in the industry.
Members’ Forum is a fantastic way for the CIOB to put a finger on the pulse of the industry and explore some of the issues that our industry is facing around the globe. Today, I am grateful for the opportunity to lead a workshop that will look specifically at the issue of quality and what can be done to improve it. We have come a long way in the last year but, with your help, we aim to go a lot further.
The Commission has focused on the need to promote a new quality culture in the industry based on taking pride in the buildings and infrastructure that we create. To achieve this we have identified two recommendations which we will be exploring in the workshop today. One is to produce a Quality Code, which will capture best practice and set the standards that we expect from the industry. The other is to develop, alongside the CIOB Academy, a competency-based qualification on quality management. These will be relevant for all members, regardless of level, experience and location and are part of an initiative to ensure that quality has a greater emphasis within the CIOB Education Framework.
Quality is a global issue for our industry and as members of the world’s largest professional body for construction management and leadership, we all have a responsibility to work to create a better industry. During today’s workshop you will have an opportunity to shape the work that the CIOB is going to undertake in the year ahead to improve the quality.