Pilot for ground-breaking Value Toolkit takes off

A first look at the future of informed, value-based decision-making in the built environment is now available.

The Construction Innovation Hub’s Value Toolkit has today (26/4/21) moved into its first six-month pivotal phase, piloting the new approach that will drive better social, environmental, and economic outcomes from investment in the built environment.

Already, 20 early implementers have signed up to be part of the pilot phase, including Arup, Mace, Mott MacDonald, and Morgan Sindall, which will see the Value Toolkit deployed on live projects and programmes over the next six months.

Directly supporting key policy objectives common to both the UK government’s Construction Playbook and the CLC Roadmap to Recovery, the Value Toolkit will allow policymakers and clients to make informed decisions at every stage of the project lifecycle.

The toolkit was developed by the Hub in collaboration with government and more than 200 organisations from industry, including CLC, CE, ACE, CECA, IPA, CIOB, RIBA, RICS, Social Value UK and UKGBC.

Ron Lang, Construction Innovation Hub impact director for value, said: “A lack of  consistency in how value-based decision-making is approached has led to substantial gaps between what organisations set out to achieve and what they end up delivering in the built environment sector. The Value Toolkit addresses this persistent challenge by providing an intuitive, user-friendly process and suite of tools to support organisations of all sizes to make and implement value-based decisions.”

Hannah Vickers, chief executive of the Association for Consultancy and Engineering (ACE), said: “The Value Toolkit should be welcomed by the entire construction sector as it unlocks a new future for our industry. Where once decisions defaulted to discussions around cheapness, we will soon be able to have detailed and evidence-based negotiations based on social, environmental or productivity outcomes. In turn, this unlocks new approaches to client/consultant relationships which will be more financially sustainable and not just based on the hours billed.

“With political aspirations to build back better post-pandemic and for a carbon free economy over the longer term, the Value Toolkit will be the process that turns political rhetoric into reality and is integral to the built environment sector’s role in delivering a better society for all. ACE is delighted to have been a supportive partner of the Construction Innovation Hub on this programme and looks forward to continuing its support as the project moves from beta to rollout over the next six months.”

Rory Kennedy, director of capital at the Department for Education, said: “As the chair of the Value Toolkit’s project board, I am delighted that the pilot phase is now underway, giving clients a chance to see first-hand the benefits this resource can bring to a range of projects and programmes. The Value Toolkit is closely aligned to the Department for Education’s ambition to address today’s needs in the school estate while also doing as much as possible to prepare for the challenges of tomorrow.

“As we recover from the unprecedented global crisis created by the pandemic, it is vital that the built environment delivers value that goes beyond capital cost by addressing the increasingly complex challenges we face, from the climate emergency to improving productivity in the construction sector. The Value Toolkit is an exciting new resource in facing these challenges, and I look forward to it developing through this pilot phase.”

Construction minister Anne-Marie Trevelyan said: “The construction industry is an invaluable asset to the UK’s economy, and we are fully committed to supporting its growth and development. Bringing together knowledge from over 200 experts from across government and industry, this toolkit will make it easier to determine the social and environmental benefits of the decisions made by firms in the construction sector, helping it continue its drive to cut emissions and build back better from the pandemic.”

The pilot phase, which will run over the next six months, will see the Toolkit’s process and suite of tools put through a rigorous course of testing with clients and practitioners before the final industry-wide version is unveiled later in the year.

Feedback and insights received during the pilot will be used to fine-tune the Toolkit to ensure that, when the final version is launched, it delivers maximum benefit for as wide a range of clients as possible.

Ron Lang added: “I would urge clients and policymakers to use the next few months to explore the pilot version of the Value Toolkit. Thanks to the enthusiasm, time and expertise we’ve received from experts across industry, a lasting shift towards value-based decision making is closer than ever.”

Click here for more information on the Value Toolkit, including the overview report and interactive process.

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