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what will construction look like post-COVID-19 pandemic?

As the construction industry begins to recover, re-opening sites, adapting its workforce to operate effectively during a pandemic, those returning have had time to consider whether returning to 'normal' is good enough.

Re-opening with social distancing measures and a heightened awareness of hygiene and social responsibility has laid the groundwork to question the old methods and consider new ones. 

Flexible working times on-site and more allowances and consideration has launched a human forward-thinking approach across the globe. Perfect for the Randstad ethos we've been prepared for this and doing this for years. To see the rest of the world finally catch-up is a breath of fresh air.

And this is what we are seeing more of today, fresh air. With reduced pollution from traffic, people and industry the globe has had a chance to also take a breath cleaning rivers, air and allowing wildlife to thrive and enter cities with more freedom and confidence. The world has taken note and is set to appreciate the small differences that can go a long way. 

red light to green light - a new way of working.

In this time of reflection with many at-home either on furlough, or working from home, or awaiting what's next - the world has had time to reassess priorities, focus on what matters most to them and watch the world change dramatically. As stories surface of a thriving environment like a plaster on a scarred earth, big businesses have begun to look to support the environmental goals of the government bringing people together. 

On the first of June 2020, more than 200 leading UK businesses, investors and business networks, signed an open letter, offering support to the Government towards the health crisis, with an emphasis on recovery efforts that align with the UK's wider social, environmental and climate goals.

The letter, signed by 207 included a large number of construction firms. It read:

With the UK facing major economic and social concerns including the risk of high unemployment and rising regional inequality, we believe that an ambitious low carbon growth and environmental improvement agenda can do a lot to address these concerns, as well as make the UK economy better prepared to deal with future shocks such as those related to climate change

The current crisis, in moving us all away from business-as-usual, has already created shifts in how we operate, and we believe we must use the recovery to accelerate the transition to net-zero. Efforts to rescue and repair the economy in response to the current crisis can and should be aligned with the UK's legislated target of net zero emissions by 2050 at the latest.

seeking a green recovery.

The Prime Minister has said that a “green” recovery will be vital to help the UK come back from a dramatic economic downturn caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, stating, “It is indeed the vision that I have for the whole country". His environmental agenda is expected to be tied to a major speech at the end of June when he will reset the government’s agenda with a financial statement to prepare the UK for the new reality after the COVID-19 pandemic.

a green revolution?

With big business, government and public opinion now aligning, it looks like the prime time for the entire construction industry to start working on a strategy and processes striving for ‘Excellent’ BREEAM, CEEQUAL, and CSH ratings.

As public and private clients become even more focused on environmental credentials the demand for more excellent ratings will enhance every project's market value, making it easier to sell or lease.