Construction Quality Commission

It has become clear that changes are needed in how construction quality is managed. As the professional body responsible for construction management, the CIOB has a duty to respond to this issue and provide solutions.

 

Code of Quality Management Consultation

The aim of the CIOB Code of Quality Management is to highlight quality issues across the construction process as well as offer guidance on best practice in construction quality management.

The Code will bring together the information sources already available, in the form of practice notes, regulations, codes and standards. This single information source will help any project team to improve construction quality by establishing a quality management process to be customised according to a firm’s needs.

A draft version of the Quality Code has been produced and we value your feedback on the document. Please note; this Code of Quality Management is currently in a draft stage and the finalised version will go through a rigorous editing and design process. This will include the addition of a Quality Management Plan Template.

The consultation will remain open until 17:00 GMT on Friday 29th March 2019. All feedback submitted will be used to inform the final version of the code, so please provide as much information as possible.

Importantly, we want a code that is produced by industry, for industry.

Send your response to quality@ciob.org.uk

Please include your name, position and company when responding.

Background

In February 2017, Professor John Cole published a report into the defects that led to the closure of 17 schools in Edinburgh and, along with other industry bodies, the CIOB attended a roundtable to discuss the findings and plan next steps. Around the same time, declining consumer satisfaction with new homes identified a need to address some serious quality failings in the residential sector.

Just a few months later, in June 2017, the fire at Grenfell Tower in London claimed the lives of 71 people and the CIOB launched a Commission of Past Presidents to investigate the issue of quality in construction.

The findings from the Call for Evidence as part of this work are published below and, in March 2018, we launched the ‘Build in Quality’ initiative with the RIBA and RICS.

Terms of Reference for the CQC

The aims of this commission are:

  • To encourage a new quality culture to instil pride in the work of the construction sector.
  • To improve the quality of the product, people and process, whilst recognising the regulatory, statutory and compliance requirements for design, off-site assembly and site production in the construction sector.
  • To instil a greater awareness of quality in construction in the education and training of CIOB members and the wider construction community.
  • To recognise the role of government, clients/owners, the design team, contractors, site production team, and subcontractors in the delivery of quality.
  • To recognise the reality of constraints (quality of people and training, and skills availability) on the workforce and the fragmentation of the supply chain.

 

Evidence gathering

We have worked with our members, and wider industry, to identify the main issues in regards to quality in construction.

We held an initial workshop at the CIOB Members’ Forum in June 2017, alongside the RIBA, which highlighted initial issues. We used desk research to expand on these issues and we identified clear push and pull factors impacting quality.

Push factors include regulations, standards and codes, and certification. Pull factors include clients and procurement, company policies, and workers’ job satisfaction.

We ran a further call for evidence exercise between October and December 2017 to delve deeper into these issues and begin to identify solutions. We gathered views and data from our members, the wider construction sector, government, and other interested stakeholders on construction quality issues. These were specifically linked to areas in which the CIOB can have influence.

Findings

The important issues from our research can be captured under four headings:

 

These issues are industry-wide and are created by, and involve, all stakeholders. Therefore any solutions need to take a holistic view involving as many different viewpoints as possible. Most of the responses showed an appetite for change and recognition for the strength of the industry and its players, particularly the professions.

The findings reflected that, by having greater support through stronger regulations, better resourced training (e.g. apprenticeships) and clearer codes and standards for quality, great strides in improving quality in construction could be made. A widely shared opinion is to treat quality management in the same way that health and safety management is regulated.

There were also many examples of existing processes, practices and initiatives which are contributing to good quality which should be encouraged and scaled up.

Results:

 

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Next steps

Based on these findings, the CQC is recommending a number of initial measures:

  • To develop a competency-based quality qualification/certification.
  • To create a quality code that will capture best practice and set the standards to be expected from the industry.
  • To ensure that quality has greater emphasis in the CIOB Education Framework.

 

More detailed proposals will be presented to members at the CIOB Members Forum in July 2018, along with a recommended action plan for medium to longer-term activities.

 

Improving Quality in the Built Environment

Download the  Report

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