Press Release

Working in partnership to drive social value in construction to secure long-term sustained growth

14 September 2018


Today, Balfour Beatty has launched the latest of its policy papers: “Building on Success: Enabling and incentivising inclusive growth”, which outlines the following:

  • Balfour Beatty’s support of the Government’s plans to extend the Social Value Act of 2012 and for commissioners to take a bold joined up approach to social value and consider the bigger picture
  • Balfour Beatty’s belief that the planned amendments to the Social Value Act should be extended to explicitly evaluate social value in the procurement process to the entire public sector – not just large central government contracts
  • Small Medium Enterprises (SMEs) should be supported and incentivised to deliver even greater social value, by being given access to existing funding enabling them to amplify the social value they currently deliver and turbo-boost existing efforts, a concept Balfour Beatty calls – “Enabling and incentivising inclusive growth”

The Social Value Act of 2012 sets a requirement for all public procurement over a given threshold to consider value in the broadest sense taking into consideration social, economic and environmental wellbeing. The lowest price is still the deciding factor in many bids, which is a lost opportunity in terms of strengthening local economies, supporting those who currently find it hard to access training or employment and ensuring a strong, resilient UK construction industry.

To drive sustained and inclusive long-term growth of the construction and infrastructure sectors there needs to be a move from the current focus on lower price tendering to one of an emphasis on the balance of value and price. Those undertaking procurement have a shared responsibility to find approaches that deliver both social value and value for money for the public pound. This will result in an even more positive impact for the UK in terms of skills, employment, business, community and environmental outcomes.

Leo Quinn, Balfour Beatty Group Chief Executive, said, “There is still a long way to go to deliver on the ambition of the Social Value Act, but we believe that the construction industry and infrastructure sector has the potential to make a much greater contribution if we and our supply chain – particularly SMEs – were better enabled to help tackle inequality and generate more inclusive growth.”

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You can read the paper in full here and get involved in the conversation using #ExpertEngineers

Media enquiries to:
Will Swan
Balfour Beatty
+44 (0)207 963 2150 | follow us @balfourbeatty

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Notes to editors:

  • Balfour Beatty ( is a leading international infrastructure group. With 28,000 employees, we provide innovative and efficient infrastructure that underpins our daily lives, supports communities and enables economic growth. We finance, develop, build and maintain complex infrastructure such as transportation, power and utility systems, social and commercial buildings.
  • Our main geographies are the UK & Ireland, US and Far East. Over the last 100 years we have created iconic buildings and infrastructure all over the world including the London Olympics’ Aquatic Centre, Hong Kong’s first Zero Carbon building, the National Museum of the Marine Corps in the US and the Channel Tunnel Rail Link.
  • Balfour Beatty has a supply chain of over 10,000 companies across UK, many of which the company has worked in partnership with for over a decade, and some of which for over thirty years. Balfour Beatty encourages supplier diversity and currently has a supply chain that consists of a large proportion of SME and minority owned businesses. In 2018 Balfour Beatty joined some of the biggest names in UK construction and signed the Government Construction Protocol for Modern Slavery which is aimed at eradicating slavery and labour exploitation in the building industry.
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