Hardies in pledge to promote conflict avoidance techniques

Murray Warner

HARDIES Property & Construction Consultants has signed up to the RICS Scotland Conflict Avoidance Pledge, which aims to drive behavioural change in the way relationships and disputes are managed.

Established by The Conflict Avoidance Coalition Steering Group, the Pledge is designed to help reduce the costs associated with disputes by promoting cooperation and the use of conflict management measures to reduce numbers of disputes and ensure projects are delivered on time and on budget.

By signing the pledge, Hardies said it is committed to: working proactively to avoid conflict and facilitating early resolution of potential disputes; developing its capability in the early identification of potential disputes and in the use of conflict avoidance measures; promoting the value of collaborative working to prevent issues developing into disputes and working with industry partners to identify, promote and utilise conflict avoidance mechanisms.

Hardies partner Murray Warner said, “The financial cost of disputes in the construction industry is measured in billions of pounds. Conflict also causes immeasurable harm to business relationships and brand reputations and is extremely slow and difficult to resolve. When problems occur, projects are frequently delivered behind schedule and over budget.

“Many contracting parties are now focusing on encouraging collaborative working and the use of early intervention techniques to try and resolve differences of opinion before they escalate into full blown disputes. An increasing number of major infrastructure bodies are now using embedded conflict avoidance mechanisms to control and manage potential conflict and prevent the need for formal dispute resolution procedures, such as adjudication, arbitration or litigation.

“We are delighted to make this pledge to help promote greater understanding and use of conflict avoidance techniques, which help contracting parties deal with differences of opinion early and amicably, and avoid costly, slow and potentially damaging litigation.”