10 RCI 0514

RCI May 2014

INDUSTRY NEWS Payment charter launched to achieve 30-day payment terms, but less than a third of founding members are signing up A Construction Supply Chain Payment Charter has been agreed by the Construction Leadership Council (CLC), with nine of the Council’s 30 firms signing up. Developed by the Institute of Credit Management (ICM) and endorsed by the CLC, the Charter sets out 11 “Fair Payment Commitments” with the eventual aim of reducing payment terms in the supply chain to 30 days by January 2018. The Charter sets out stages for this to be achieved, with terms of 45 days from June 2015, and 60 days already in place. Kevin Louch, president of the National Specialist Contractors Council (NSCC) – one of the CLC members to have already signed up – said: “Many within the industry, and not just Specialist Contractors, want to see 30-day payment terms on all construction projects. Numerous clients already pay in 30 days and we would like them to make public their commitment to the new Payment Charter and give the industry the confidence to pass that payment through the supply chain.” Other pledges within the Charter include not withholding cash retentions, as well as clear commitments in respect of ‘pay less’ notices, contract variations, electronic payments and Supply Firms signed up to the Charter are: − Barratt Developments − Berkeley Group − British Land − Imtech UK − Kier − Laing O’Rourke − Skanska − Stanford Industrial Concrete Flooring − Stepnell New findings reveal female workers still being paid less than men doing the same job 010 MAY 2014 RCIMAG.COM Chain Finance schemes. At the Charter’s launch on April 22, only nine of the CLC’s 30 companies signed up to the voluntary commitment. Peter Hansford, the Government’s chief construction advisor, said: “This Charter signifies the Construction Leadership Council’s commitment to small and medium-sized business, and the important role they play in the construction industry.” NSCC chief executive Suzannah Nichol MBE said: “Fair payment is crucial to the recovery of our dynamic industry and its diverse and innovative supply chain. It is most welcome to have a charter which sets out payment requirements so clearly, and will ultimately achieve the 30-days terms that will enable Specialist Contractors to grow their businesses.” Philip King, CEO of the Institute of Credit Management, will now lead work on the development of monitoring arrangements for the commitments made by signatories to the Charter. The Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) has called for action after data released by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) has shown that, on average, women in construction are paid 12% less than their male counterparts in the same role. The pay differential is highest among construction and building trades supervisors, reaching 33%. The figures, which are based on hourly rates paid to men and women, also show a differential of 25% among architects. Responding to the recent statistics, Roy Cavanagh MBE, training and education executive for Seddon, said: “As an industry, construction is crying out for talented women to get involved and take advantage of the career opportunities on offer. “However, if the wage gap remains, up to 55% of the working population will be alienated and the prospect of recruiting or retaining women will be negligible. “Currently women make up just 12% of the construction industry workforce, with a mere 1.2% working in the manual trades. To create a fairer and more inclusive workforce, we need to make sure that women get equal pay.” In response to the findings, CITB is working with industry to launch the Be Fair Framework. Developed in partnership with Constructing Equality, the industry approach is intended to transform working environments across all segments of construction by addressing negative cultures and practices and all forms of discrimination. Chrissi McCarthy, managing director of Constructing Equality, said: “We need to focus on retention and understand why women, compared to men, disproportionately leave the industry as their careers develop. “Maternity is only responsible for a third of women leaving the sector so we must ask the question, is the fact that we are paying women less indicative of the fact that we value them less? If so, it’s likely that they will have noticed and we must therefore consider the impact that this has on their career choices.” Kate Lloyd, Fairness, Inclusion and Respect manager for CITB said: “As an industry we need to address this issue, and fast. If we fail to bridge these wage gaps, we won’t be able to attract women into this industry or keep them. It’s as simple as that. “The Be Fair Framework, which will launch in June, will help construction companies be more aware of Fairness, Inclusion and Respect issues including equal pay. It will help us to challenge the outdated perceptions of the construction industry so that we can create the workforce of the future.” These findings follow a survey last month carried out by the CITB which found that 61% of the 500 construction workers asked had heard sexist language at work in the past year, with 14% having heard it once a week or more. The research also found that 12% of women admitted to having their confidence knocked by offensive language used in the industry and 4% said they had left a job because of it. Ricoh Arena, Coventry 29th - 30th October 2014 REGISTER NOW! www.rcishow.co.uk • FREE £5 LUNCH VOUCHER • FREE COFFEE & DANISH • FREE PARKING • FREE DISCOUNT VOUCHER BOOKLET SHOW2014 sponsored by


RCI May 2014
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