Our regions have been putting our sustainability strategy into action and delivering on our strategy.
See Sustainability in action for our top stories.
In 2016, we built on the strong relationship we have with the UK Defence Infrastructure Organisation under the Aspire Defence joint venture. The latest contract involves the design, construction and facilities management services at garrisons across the Salisbury Plain Training Area and at Aldershot, together worth over £1.1 billion.
It includes a 35-year concession contract for Project Allenby/Connaught, the largest infrastructure private finance initiative to date by the UK Ministry of Defence. Sustainability is at the heart of the contract, with demolitions planned to optimise surplus material recycling and a dedicated environmental team to oversee the ecological impact and safeguard the habitats of garrison site wildlife.
We deliver a wide range of services across the UK for Network Rail, including track renewal, electrification, engineering and remodelling works, station upgrades and the construction of new track routes. The success of our long-term partnership is based on our knowledge and expertise, the quality and reliability of our services and, importantly, our sector-leading focus on health and safety. In 2016, this partnership was strengthened further through our investments in embodied carbon and ‘no net loss’ biodiversity initiatives.
We have been working in partnership with Nationwide Building Society for nine years in the UK, providing facilities management services for its estate. In 2016, we won a new seven-year contract to deliver services aligned to the client’s sustainability strategy, including optimised energy management. We expect this contract to generate approximately £350 million of revenue. Our long-standing relationship is based on our expertise in ‘whole-life’ property management and services, our sector-leading ability to provide sustainable solutions and our focus on delivering a first-class customer experience.
In Muscat, we are constructing a five-star beachfront resort hotel and 68 hotel apartments for Kempinski Hotels, incorporating low-carbon and resource-efficient initiatives with substantial cost savings. During 2016, connecting to mains water and sewerage instead of tankers saved around £41,000, while replacing generators with mains electricity saved £120,000. Swimming pool water was reused on the construction site, saving £19,700, upcycled floor protection sheets saved £19,000 and repurposing backfill soil has saved the same amount.
Alan Mou, our customer service lead at Vancouver Airport, won Carillion’s Customer Award in 2016 for most improved customer experience – and was presented with a further award from the airport’s management. With daily inspections, Alan built an excellent rapport with Vancouver Airport Authority, rectified maintenance issues before they became problems and built exceptional customer trust, with NPS soaring by +71 points.
“Working with our customers and our suppliers on health, safety and wellbeing is just as important as providing great service across complex sectors. We apply the same standards of health, safety and environment in everything that we do.”
Nigel Taylor, Managing Director of Services
Al Futtaim Carillion has successfully applied a number of innovative approaches to reduce workplace accidents and incidents. Its Target Zero campaign for employees and sub-contractors includes an internationally accredited training course (mandatory for supervisors); behavioural safety training based on self-responsibility and leadership by example; daily safety meetings to identify site hazards; Don’t Walk By campaigns, emphasising employees as the ‘eyes and ears’ of the business; and Safety Action Groups, comprising volunteers from all levels of our workforce.
We not only build roads but we are drivers too, so we rolled out our One Road to Safety strategy in 2016. This included launching Permit to Drive training in the Middle East – a series of checks and in-vehicle coaching, which saw 70% fewer collisions involving our vehicles in the region. Also in the Middle East, we installed smart telematics systems on all commercial vehicles. As well as significant fuel efficiency savings, these have reduced accidents by 58% over a year.
In Canada, snowplough drivers took part in safety training in vehicle simulators. This meant they could virtually experience the hazards of winter while driving in a safe environment, using the quieter summer months to build their skills. The drivers were also trained in fuel-efficient driving.
We are making extensive use of technology for health and wellbeing. We now have defibrillators on most UK and Canada sites and we are trialling real-time health monitoring devices. From 2017, we will be using Skype for occupational health assessments, which we expect to improve service delivery and reduce referral and employee travel times.
At Paradise in Birmingham, we trialled wearable dust-monitoring equipment, providing real-time information on dust levels. This allows teams to act immediately and protect people on site from harmful exposure.
In response to employee feedback, our revised health strategy includes an action plan on mental health, which includes a Stress and Mental Health Charter and a stress awareness training module. In 2016, we made a pledge to encourage conversations on mental health as part of the Time to Change campaign, run by the charities Mind and Rethink Mental Illness.
We continue to promote our award-winning Employee Assistance Programme. This framework of tools and guidance helps our people, their families and line managers to recognise the signs and symptoms of stress and offers practical skills to deal with it. In Canada, we worked with the Mental Health Commission to train employees in mental health first aid, and front-line hospital workers have already applied it in a number of real-life situations.
Diversity of gender and sexual orientation improves decision-making, strengthens our teams and is simply the right way to build a sustainable business. However, it remains a challenge in our industry sectors. Women represent just 21% of the science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) workforce in the UK, while one in 10 LGBT people leave a workplace because they do not feel welcome (Stonewall). Changing industry perceptions and growing a pipeline of diverse, talented leaders takes time but we are beginning to see results.
Women now make up over a third of our workforce and we have managed to hold our ratio of female leadership at 18% despite changes in our business and contracts coming to an end. Increasing the proportion of women in leadership roles is key to our diversity and inclusion strategy and 2020 gender pathways targets, led by our Board. We were listed in The Times as one of 2016’s Top 50 UK Employers for Women, and achieved Silver in the BITC Gender Diversity Benchmark.
We audit subcontractor staff accommodation, working closely with our contractors and suppliers to improve standards where we find unacceptable conditions. Having carried out 218 audits across the Middle East (including 97% of our sub-contractors in Qatar), we ceased work with 65 suppliers where, despite ongoing efforts, improvements could not be achieved. We are auditing all MENA Tier 1 supply chain partners against our Worker Welfare Standards document, incorporating the Dhaka Principles and outlining expectations, including recruitment, living arrangements, welfare and repatriation.
We take a human perspective on this industry-wide challenge, but we have uncompromising expectations about the practical actions needed to solve it. Where we are responsible for worker accommodation, we provide on-site clinic facilities, adequate living space segregation, smoke alarms, recreational areas and sports facilities, internet access, TV rooms, shops, prayer rooms, canteens and secure, accessible storage for passports. Of note, the highest level of engagement with our Your Say employee survey came from our Middle East colleagues.
Well over 1,000 of our suppliers are now members of the UK’s Supply Chain Sustainability School, which we continue to fund and advise (our Chief Sustainability Officer is one of the school’s Board Directors). In 2016, we helped the school develop and promote fairness, inclusion and respect training, to build supplier diversity. We are also co-creating resources to help suppliers respond to the UK Modern Slavery Act. The Horizon Working Group explores how academics and businesses can work together to tackle future issues, working alongside Middlesex University of London on welfare conditions in supply chains in 2016.
Our partnership approach continues to be the basis of successful supplier relationships, even in the most testing of circumstances like the horrific wildfires in Canada last year. With the fires affecting our roads maintenance and Bouchier businesses, we donated $15,000 (£9,000) and provided food and accommodation for 1,000 firefighters, RCMP and first responders.
Our supplier partners stepped in too, with Sysco (a food supplier) donating food and water daily for rescue workers and fire fighters, while NSC Minerals (our salt vendor) provided $20,000 (£12,000) in Walmart gift cards to displaced employees. Our travel provider also worked tirelessly to find flights and accommodation for those who were most affected.
Our carbon reduction plans continue to be key to systematically reducing carbon year-on-year, working closely with customer teams to introduce ways to reduce or eliminate carbon on infrastructure projects. Smart boiler controls will save Oxfordshire County Council £10,000 and 131 tonnes a year in carbon, while hybrid generators have saved £4,500 a year for Network Rail. In other areas, transporting materials by train instead of truck has resulted in a five-fold reduction in emissions on a number of contracts.
In the Middle East, we are focused on minimising diesel generator power – connecting to mains power as soon as possible – which saved up to £112,000 at the Madinat Jumeirah hotel in Dubai and £18,500 a month at the Kempinski hotel in Oman. In Qatar, we have helped achieve LEED Gold status on the Msheireb Phase 1B urban development. This included installing photocells and timers on lighting distribution boards, reducing generator loads, while portable chiller plants removed the need for ice, saving up to £65,000 a year and achieving significant reductions in water usage.
Local authorities are key customers in our UK operations, where we have installed solar photovoltaic panels on seven schools and biomass boilers for a number of councils. Schools with large solar power systems can expect to reduce their energy bills by up to £6,000 a year and their carbon footprint by 40 tonnes.
“The system is clean and effective and will have a marked impact on the amount of energy that we buy from our usual energy supplier. It’s also a great example to our children of how science and technology can be applied in a really practical way. I am sure that they will learn a lot from the project.”
Susan Parker, Head Teacher, East Wittering Community Primary School
In Oman, we are saving £32,000 a month for a range of customers by recycling scrap metal. In our roads business in Canada, we are working with Benmet Steel on a scrap metal rebate programme in order to track site scrap volumes, coordinate delivery to third parties and ensure maximum revenue in re-selling scrap steel for reuse.
We exceeded 2016 targets by almost 10% in our operations and we continue to work with our suppliers to reduce their own water extraction, particularly in the Middle East. However, water use across our office estate showed only a modest improvement, linked to a higher number of people within our buildings and the ‘phasing in’ of water systems in new estates.
Using new water-saving technology, enhanced maintenance procedures and usage monitoring, we helped Centrica to achieve a 10% reduction in water consumption, making them one of only 24 companies on the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP’s) Water Management A-List. We have also created rainwater lagoons on a number of construction sites, including Hampton Gardens.
Biodiverse project sites are important to our customers, the communities we serve and to our people. We conduct biodiversity risk assessments for each of our contracts and our people lead wildlife-based volunteering, particularly with local schools. In 2016, our Canada Outland teams spent 26,000 hours planting 45 million trees – a phenomenal operation which will remove up to 20 million tonnes of CO2 whilst adding up to 500 million tonnes of oxygen into the air we breathe. Our Middle East teams have been following Canada’s example, with 26 volunteers planting ghaf seedlings to combat desertification and preserve the region’s biodiversity heritage.
Building on our long-standing partnership with the UK Wildlife Trusts, we continued our three-year Midlands strategic partnership, and continue to work with the UK Freshwater Habitats Trust to protect pond, lake and watercourse biodiversity. We are board members of the Birmingham and Black Country Local Nature Partnership and work with them to champion the essential role of the natural environment in Birmingham and identify practical ways to green the infrastructure.
Working with key clients such as Highways England and Network Rail, we are finding ways to create a net biodiversity gain along our highways and railways – which means creating more wildlife habitats than are removed during infrastructure operations. So far, we have achieved ‘net positive’ status on our Midland Mainline programme and ‘net neutral’ on our Morpeth contract, where 230 hours of Carillion volunteer time helped to establish a schools education hub, ponds, gardens, mammal tunnels, crossings, pollinator aids and bat areas. This inspiring work enabled us to win the Construction Industry Research and Information Association (CIRIA) Big Biodiversity Challenge. Our M6 team partnered with Natural England to introduce non-standard night-working methodology, protecting badgers and great crested newts. The A1 Leeming to Barton project team donated more than 350 trees and plants for their Sustainable Pollinator corridor project – more than were removed during the project – winning a Green Apple Award for Environmental Best Practice and Green World Ambassador status in 2016.
When a cargo ship ran aground off the island of Masirah (a vital nesting site for the critically endangered loggerhead turtle), our teams stepped in to tackle the crisis. Combing 33 kilometres of beach by hand for over a month, 14 Carillion people collected seven tonnes of debris. Working alongside the Environment Society of Oman, the clearance helped turtle hatchlings find their way to the sea, since mechanical debris removal could have damaged the turtle nests. To further raise awareness of this endangered species, we funded 2,000 turtle conservation booklets for school children in Oman.
In Canada, we respect the uniqueness of indigenous individuals, their communities and businesses, and recognise their deep-rooted cultural heritage. It is expected that all Carillion employees, our partners and contractors recognise the history of indigenous people and seek to respectfully understand and promote their culture, customs, traditions and beliefs.
Our 17-year First Nations Natural Resources Youth Employment Program develops the next generation of First Nations leaders in our sector. The six-week summer schedule combines work experience, education and training, with the chance to gain two high school co-operative education credits. Since its inception in 2000, 390 indigenous youth have successfully completed the scheme, with 48 graduating in 2016.
We are helping public libraries to reinvent themselves as community learning hubs which supports our pledge to Vision for Literacy – a campaign run by the UK National Literacy Trust for businesses to help close the literacy gap and boost social mobility. Through our not-for-profit subsidiary, Cultural Community Solutions, we manage 44 libraries on behalf of local authorities in London, Croydon, Ealing, Harrow and Hounslow. In 2016, we began a partnership with LEGO Education to deliver a series of workshops in these libraries, which focus on developing children’s literacy and STEM skills.
The workshops attracted teams from as far afield as Norwich and 83% of parents rated the sessions as excellent. Our libraries are the first in the UK to offer interactive LEGO WeDo and StoryStarter kits, and we hosted the first LEGO League Junior event in the country, alongside the Institute of Engineering and Technology. Attracting over 34,500 children from 18 countries, this fun approach to our industry and its opportunities helps to inspire our future workforce.
As the main contractor on the new Midland Metropolitan Hospital, we are part of a wider initiative to regenerate one of England’s most deprived areas. Working alongside Sandwell Council, the Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust and a range of local organisations, we are showcasing that health is inextricably linked to broader social and economic issues – from poor education and unemployment to inadequate housing and diet. As well as providing locally sourced meals, the hospital will boost employment and manufacturing across the Midlands.
The Trust is committed to spend 2% of the new hospital’s annual budget with local suppliers, adding up to £8 million to the local economy. We have our own target of 70% local employment and aim to source 80% of construction materials locally. Once open, the hospital will be a hub for the wider community: shop spaces will be reserved for local traders and wall space for local artists; outside, the large green space will cater for sports and growing vegetables. Engagement with school children around diet, health and potential career paths within the hospital is planned.
Al Futtaim Carillion launched an endowment for needy families in 2016. The initiative is part of our international vision for endowment, which was launched by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai. It has been awarded the Dubai Endowment Sign under the Mohammad Bin Rashid Global Initiative in recognition of community investment as a model for private sector enterprises. It is hoped this will encourage other businesses in the region to support those marginalised in the community.
“This vision has proved itself as tool to revive endowment through innovation. Through the maintenance endowment, we will utilise part of our resources and efforts to help needy families.”
Edmund Mahabir, Managing Director, Al Futtaim Carillion
Six senior managers across our Middle East operations cycled 500 kilometres in three days from Oman to Dubai, ending up at our Al Futtaim Carillion head office in Motor City. The team raised £4,000 for Sentebale in Lesotho, an international children’s charity we supported with a collaborative project in 2015, where the nation has the second-highest rate of HIV in the world and a third of children there are orphans.
Many of Canada’s indigenous people continue to live in inadequate housing. So, when the Hilton Hotel in Toronto had 400 surplus bedsheets, we stepped in with our supplier (MAC Furnished Suites) to find a new home for this high-quality linen. Through a long-standing relationship with Health Linen Services, which provides linen and laundry service for acute care hospitals, rehabilitation centres and mental health facilities across Ontario, we distributed freshly laundered sheets to two indigenous communities in Thunder Bay and Timmins.
In Belfast, as part of our new contract with the Housing Executive to provide maintenance services for 22,000 houses over 10 years, we are partnering with Ulster Supported Employment Ltd on an upcycling programme for social housing tenants. The organisation employs those with disabilities or health conditions to collect and refurbish furniture and white goods from households and reissue them to social housing tenants. With a plan to make collections from 3,000 houses a year over the next 10 years, we hope to support disadvantaged communities while also reducing our landfill costs (around £10,000 a month).
By working one to one with students in our mentoring programmes, we have found that confidence and self-worth can dramatically increase. For our mentors, it is equally enriching, helping them see different approaches to ideas and build life skills.
We are part of the UK Enterprise Advisor Network, a Careers and Enterprise Council initiative to match employers with educators. Our 12 enterprise advisors volunteer to support local schools or colleges with employer engagement plans, helping to inspire young people and develop the skills they need for successful careers in construction and services. This skills-based volunteering also helps with their own personal development and gives us valuable insights into the way the next generation of workers are thinking to help shape our wider understanding.
Our teams in Belfast won BITC Northern Ireland Education Partner of the Year for their work in transforming the aspirations of disenfranchised young people in the city. Six colleagues volunteered as mentors at the Link Centre for 14 to 16 year-olds who are having problems with schooling. They worked on positive behaviours, future career visualisation, CV and interview skills, as well as giving the young people a chance to experience a real work environment at our offices.
In 2016, Carillion supported a research project which examined the changing nature of the relationship between businesses and communities. We created a website with all the latest updates on the outcomes of the research. Organisations can also make a pledge through this site.
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