Construction conference to debate the biggest issues facing sector

Mactaggart & Mickel Timber Systems demonstrates to industry contacts a live timber system installation demonstration in Largs. The team install a closed-panel system at The Rise development to illustrate how the company can make homes wind and watertight in just one day. Ross Mickel. Pic by Ashley Coombes/Epicscotland. 24/6/2010

OVER 400 leading figures in the Scottish construction industry will gather in Glasgow today (Tuesday 13 September) to discuss issues including productivity, innovation, procurement and digitisation.

Hosted by BBC journalist David Henderson, the Construction Scotland and Innovation Centre Conference and Industry Showcase at the city’s Hilton Hotel will be the largest construction conference in Scotland.

Speakers will include Jamie Hepburn MSP, Minister for Employability and Training, Jim McColl OBE, founder, chairman and CEO of Clyde Blowers, who will share his insights on growth through change and innovation, and Michael Dall, lead construction economist at Barbour ABI.

Interactive workshops will tackle topical issues including delivering the Scottish Government’s target of 50,000 new homes, and rethinking public procurement.

Ken Gillespie, managing director of Galliford Try and a member of Construction Scotland’s Industry Leadership Group, will chair one of the day’s key sessions focusing on building profit and productivity. 

The new Profit through Productivity initiative to help Scottish construction businesses boost their profits by improving their productivity and efficiency will also be launched at the event. The scheme is a collaboration between Construction Scotland Innovation Centre (CSIC), Scottish Enterprise, Scottish Manufacturing Advisory Service, Zero Waste Scotland and Skills Development Scotland.

Jamie Hepburn MSP, Minister for Employability and Training said: “The construction industry is a core sector of the Scottish economy, providing infrastructure to businesses across all sectors. The Scottish Government fully appreciates the importance of the industry to the Scottish economy as a whole and to the all the people who are employed by the sector.  We have a strong commitment to continue to work together with Construction Scotland to grow our construction industry and achieve the best results for Scotland.” 

Ed Monaghan, Chair of Construction Scotland Industry Leadership Group, and Chief Executive of Mactaggart & Mickel Group added, “Today is going to be a fantastic opportunity for hundreds of construction professionals to share ideas, hear some good business advice and hopefully be inspired by what can be possible if we look to the future and embrace change.  It’s true that the construction industry faces some challenges, but I am confident that we can tackle them head-on by improving our efficiency, effectiveness, and by looking at new ways to do things. I hope today can be a starting point for a bright new future for the industry.”

Stephen Good, chief executive of Construction Scotland Innovation Centre said, “Our last conference in 2014 saw the launch of the Construction Scotland Innovation Centre, and since then we have made fantastic progress, helping 33 innovative projects get off the ground so far. I’m looking forward to sharing some of the highlights with today’s audience, and hopefully inspiring even more people to get in touch with us with their ideas.”

Jim McColl OBE, founder, chairman and CEO of Clyde Blowers said, “Construction is a really important part of our economy which impacts both directly and indirectly on all of us. I look forward to sharing some of the techniques and approaches we have used within a number of our businesses which have resulted in significant improvement in profitability.”