Constructionline and Wates join forces to drive use of social enterprises

A unique partnership with Wates Group, one of UK’s leading privately-owned construction and property services companies and Constructionline, the most connected provider of procurement and supply chain management services, looks set to open a new market of opportunities for the social enterprise sector.

Wates is widely acknowledged as one of the leading proponents of Social Enterprises (SEs) in the construction industry, as a founder member of SE UK’s Buy Social Corporate Challenge, and over several months has worked with Constructionline to shape its online procurement platform to improve routes to market for social enterprises.

Today this work comes to fruition, with the launch of the enhanced platform, encouraging Constructionline’s 4,700 buyers from across the construction industry to include social enterprises in their project supply chains.

The announcement comes amid a drive by Government to strengthen the Social Value Act, with Cabinet Office Minister David Lidington announcing changes to public sector procurement, with tenders to be awarded on the basis of social value as well as value for money. The use of SEs in supply chains, with their emphasis on delivering social value and community investment, will be key to companies meeting this obligation.

Constructionline CEO John Edmunds said:

“The financial and social benefits that social enterprises deliver for society are being increasingly recognised and rewarded. We are therefore delighted to partner with Wates and introduce a new question set, which will quickly identify those suppliers involved in social enterprise initiatives.”

“At Constructionline we have always championed SMEs and our partnership with Wates further enhances our reputation as the industry leader in this regard. Enabling our 4,700 buyers to find social enterprises strengthens our commitment to reducing duplication and saving buyers time and money, while connecting SME and SE members with some of the biggest and best buyers in the industry.”

Su Pickerill, Group Community Investment Manager at Wates Group said:

“Wates is committed to supporting the social enterprise sector and to maximising the social value both we and the industry can generate from our work. Social enterprises have the potential to address some major issues within construction, such as the skills shortage. Not only by helping to secure work for those furthest from the labour market, such as ex-offenders, or the long term unemployed, but also supporting people to re-engage with training and employment.

“We’re pleased to be working with Constructionline to highlight to our colleagues in the built environment the added value that Social Enterprises offer. By trading, we can support these organisations to scale and achieve greater impact.”

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 About Constructionline

Constructionline is the UK’s leading provider of third-party, technology enabled qualification and accreditation services. Constructionline plays a critical role in the Procurement value chain, collecting, assessing and monitoring over 30 million pieces of information, from more than 47,000 suppliers through a PAS 91:2013+A1 2017 aligned question set.

Our aim is to provide efficiency savings and opportunities to Suppliers working with public and private sector Buyers within the construction industry. We achieve this by providing a single source of accreditation, streamlining procurement procedures and improving the supply chain management processes, reducing risk and helping Suppliers work more easily and efficiently with Buyers.

At Constructionline our mission is to help our members simplify procurement tasks, reduce risk, keep pace with legislation and achieve more.

For more information on Constructionline please visit www.constructionline.co.uk.

About the Wates Group

The Wates Group, established in 1897, is one of the leading privately owned construction, development and property services businesses in the UK. It employs approximately 4,000 people and generated turnover of £1.62bn in 2017. Wates was named Construction News’ Contractor of the Year in 2017; Building Magazine’s Major Contractor of the Year in 2016 and was awarded the Queen’s Award for Enterprise for Sustainable Development for the second time. Wates was the first large contractor ever to be awarded Business in the Community’s Community Mark and in 2013 was awarded the inaugural National Business Award for Corporate Citizenship in recognition of its leadership and excellence in community investment. In 2017 Wates was named Organisation of the Year at the inaugural UK Social Mobility Awards.

Wates is committed to the long-term future of the built environment and to leaving a positive legacy for the communities in which we work and live.

www.wates.co.uk