HNY everyone and welcome back. I hope you are well rested as this promises to be huge year for industry reform, and we need your support!

We must accelerate reform of how projects are procured and delivered in Australia—if for no other reason than addressing the looming capability and capacity constraints and in turn improve industry productivity, sustainability, diversity and inclusion.

The Australian Infrastructure Plan provides a road map for reform and the national procurement inquiry provides a means to ensure it is realised. It will take collaboration and coordination between all industry stakeholders and delivery agencies, with leadership from the Federal Government, to ensure the required progress is made.

Federal election

This year’s Federal election is important for accelerating industry reforms. Improving the industry’s productivity as well as project outcomes, through better uptake of digital tools and innovations, improving the industry’s culture and addressing the skills shortages are paramount.

Heading into this year’s Federal election, we have a clear plan. We will be proposing a simple yet effective rating scheme to accelerate the reforms in a consistent way and we will be making a pre-budget submission requesting that funding be allocated for it. The funding requirements are modest but the potential benefits enormous.

Future of construction

Circumstances have combined to provide a real opportunity to shape the future of the construction industry. That is why, for the first time in the history of the Australian Constructors Association, this year we are launching a national conference. Partnering with FuturePlace, we will be bringing forward discussions between government and industry at the Future of Construction Summit between 4-5 May 2022 in Sydney.

Day 1 of the conference will focus on reform and discussions will pivot around the three pillars of a sustainable construction industry: strong positive culture, equitable and aligned commercial frameworks, and sufficient capability, capacity and skills. Day 2 is our innovation day. It will focus on driving greater productivity and innovation so we can do more with less!

The pinnacle of the conference is the Australian Construction Achievement Award gala dinner. Celebrating the great achievements of our industry is a must and this is exactly what this event is about.

In terms of content and speakers, this will be unlike any other industry conference you have ever attended.

Don’t miss out – book tickets for the summit and the gala dinner today.

Construction Industry Leadership Forum

The activities of the Construction Industry Leadership Forum are also gaining pace.

Through this forum, the Australian Constructors Association and the NSW and Victorian Governments are working to improve the effectiveness and value of the procurement and delivery of government infrastructure programs. More specifically, the partners are working together to set a common agenda for change, share knowledge and set a program of activities to resolve commercial and contractual issues and address capability and capacity constraints.  A focus for this year will be on productivity improvements for the industry.

The forum operates with three workstreams focusing on: value for money, procurement reform and capability and capacity. Stay tuned for the launch of the Construction Industry Leadership Forum website shortly.

Construction Industry Culture Taskforce

Expanding on the Construction Industry Leadership Forum, the Construction Industry Culture Taskforce released the draft Culture Standard for public consultation in final quarter of 2021. The consultation has now closed, and the taskforce is busy reviewing the feedback. Thank you to all our stakeholders who not only contributed to the development of the draft and the consultation tool, but to all the stakeholders who contributed feedback. Your feedback will help shape what we believe will be a game changing initiative for the culture of the industry.

Looking forward the taskforce will be releasing an updated version, incorporating feedback, and will be piloting the standard on various projects this year. The next steps will be to undertake another review taking into account experiences from the pilot projects before driving wider adoption of the standard.

Thought leadership

Industry collaboration is at the heart of everything we do, and we are excited to release a series of thought leadership papers we have been developing over the past year with Consult Australia. Starting with a digital technology paper, we will also be releasing papers focusing on reliance information, multiple design reviews and model client. Supporting the papers will be a series of webinars hosted by Consult Australia. Stay tuned.

Having already released the new Construction Engineer Learning and Development Guide in partnership with Engineers Australia, this year we will be expanding on the guide to develop a new area of practice. With increasing levels of responsibility being held by engineers we are focused on ensuring their career paths and professional recognition are clear to enable greater engagement, satisfaction and retention. We look forward to providing updates on the progress of this work later in the year, along with the progress of further collaborations.

Off the blocks

We have been quick out of the blocks this year as there is not a moment to waste!

To deliver the record pipeline of infrastructure projects, the industry must innovate to find ways to do more with less. The industry has limited resources and closing the gap in productivity growth between construction and other major industries is essential. If we could just halve this gap, we could be constructing an extra $15Bn of infrastructure every year

We can’t do this alone—it requires a joint response from government and industry.

Jump on board, and let’s make 2022 a year to remember for all the right reasons.


Jon Davies
Chief Executive Officer