Things are changing within UK Infrastructure.

Have you felt the shift in your business?

Markets that have typically been a hive of mega project activity are remaining static, or even declining.

The biggy is the rail sector. For CP7, there will be loads of renewals works but less major enhancements – where does that leave all the major projects talent?

Likewise, highways. Due to delays in government decisions, funding, cost inflation and planning uncertainties, many highways programmes are not progressing as expected.

How is the market reacting?

Businesses are diversifying.

We are currently helping several businesses across the supply chain to find talent that will allow them to develop into new areas.

While work is slowing in some areas. It is absolutely booming in others.

And people are taking advantage of this shift.

What areas are worth exploring?

  1. Water – spend for AMP8 is £96bn up from £51bn in AMP7.
  2. Energy – Sizewell is on the up, National Grid’s multibillion ‘Great Grid Upgrade’, along with SSEN and SP Energy Networks spending billions to upgrade the network.
  3. Defence – Ageing assets needs to be replaced within the defence portfolio and this is one area that no government will be sacrificing at the moment.
  4. Aviation – travel demands are back to pre-pandemic levels so airport expansion projects that were put off in 2020 are back in the pipeline.

What talent is being recruited?

1. Business Development

We are currently seeing consulting firms and contractors looking to bring in BD Directors to grow these areas.

The most common background here is someone who really knows the client and market they want to win work from.

Want to grow in defence – look to recruit former army personnel or senior leaders within MoD or DIO.

Likewise for water and energy – people who understand the client’s challenges and have a network in these sectors.

2. Delivery

There are two options here. Bring in people who have done these types of projects before or transfer talent internally between sectors.

Other regulated sectors can be easily transferrable. People who have experience working closely with government, within 5-year regulatory periods.

For Transmission and Distribution projects, there are lots of synergies with rail and roads as cabling and overhead line projects are “linear construction”. Candidates from these backgrounds will be able to apply their experience of driving delivery and optimising construction logistics.

There are loads of ways to find great candidates to allow your business to expand into these booming markets.

For inspiration or help finding leaders in areas you don’t have as much experience in drop me a line on 07590 478 088.

Author: Jim Newsom

Jim Newsom

Managing Director