The Specialist Engineering Contractors' (SEC) Group -
The Voice of the Specialist Engineering Contractor
Together, these organisations act on behalf of a sector comprising over 60,000 firms and a workforce of more than 300,000. They account for the largest single component (by value) of construction output.
SEC Group prides itself on being at the forefront of developments within the Construction Industry, and on being able to influence both government policy and senior figurers in the industry through its wide network of contacts.
On this homepage you will see listed, each with a short summary of our position, the issues with which SEC Group is currently involved, and we hope that you will be able to find on this list the issue which is of concern to you. If you click on the topic, this will link you to all the relevant papers SEC has gathered on this topic up to now.
Building Information Modelling (BIM)
BIM is a process involving the structured creation, sharing, use and re-use of digital information about a building or built asset throughout its entire lifecycle, from design through procurement and construction and beyond, into its operation sand management. SEC Group has been closely involved in the development of BIM, and is associated with the BIM Academy at the University of Northumbria.
Construction 2025 is a joint strategy, released on 2 July 2013, which sets out how industry and Government will work together to put Britain at the forefront of global construction over the coming years. This document summarises the key themes and commitments within the strategy. SEC Group was heavily involved in the development of the Strategy.
The Delivery Group exists to support the Construction Leadership Council, to deliver the Industrial Strategy published on 2 July 2013. Membership is drawn from across the industry’s representatives and other bodies and from Government. SEC Group is a member of the Delivery Group and was heavily involved in the development of the Strategy.
SEC Group operates its own Health and Safety Task Group which meets regularly and addresses the Health and Safety issues which occupy the industry. Members of the Health and Safety Executive are part of the group, and cooperate closely with SEC Group on all safety issues. Current themes are:
- Accident statistics
- Changes in CDM regulations
- Project preparation managers
- Standardisation of prequalification schemes
Late payment is one of the biggest problems affecting our members, who typically work for buyers or main contractors in the wider construction sector. Payments may not only be late but may also be withheld. Such action by the main contractor may often lead to unnecessary insolvency, and there is uneven distribution of insolvency risk down the supply chain. SEC Group is lobbying for such practices to become illegal.
Integrated Project Insurance
The Specialist Engineering Alliance, supported by experts across the breadth of the construction and insurance industries, including SEC Group, took action in 2010 to make a proposition to Government to simplify and make more efficient the insurance of building projects. The proposal will be developed under a new product called Integrated Project Insurance.
Much of the work carried out by the SEC Group on behalf of its members is in the form of lobbying and networking with a wide range of experts and groups who have influence in the construction industry. In addition SEC Group is frequently in touch with local and specialised media, writing regular columns in sector publications such as Plumb Heat, ECA news, B&ES newsletter, Construction enquirer, Building Magazine, and issuing press releases.
Through membership of the government’s SME Panel (chaired by a Cabinet Office minister) SEC Group has proposed that initially, (other major suppliers to follow), the government’s top 30 suppliers be required to confirm they are discharging payment within 30 days to their own supply chains on government contracts.
Over a number of years the building services industries have seen the introduction of a series of schemes/initiatives relating to establishing the competency of organisations and operatives to undertake work. One co-ordinated voluntary self managed scheme will give building services businesses more reasons to participate in any green initiative. SEC Group supports this initiative.
There are signs of steady progress in central government opening up the procurement process to small suppliers, marked by a decision to remove Pre Qualification Questionnaires (PQQs) for contracts under £100,000 in value. It is essential to spread these practices to projects in local government and the NHS. SEC Group supports the adoption of PAS91.
Project bank Accounts (PBAs)
A Project Bank Account is a ring-fenced bank account out of which payments are made directly and simultaneously by a client to a lead contractor and members of his supply chain. The PBA must have trust status which means that the monies in the account can be paid only to the beneficiaries – the lead contractor and supply chain members. SEC Group supports fully the use of PBAs in the public and private sectors.
The current recession has highlighted the iniquities of the practice of cash retentions in the construction industry. Having provided a cash retention to a company up the supply chain that is now facing the prospect of insolvency, there is nothing that a firm can do to protect its retention monies. SEC Group is currently preparing legislation on retentions for the regional governments in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.
In addition to its activities in lobbying through the government, the Cabinet Office and the media, SEC Group has an expanding role in providing training and advice on all current issues all over the UK. These activities include practical sessions to member association practitioners on, for example, opening Project Bank Accounts, or meetings with members of regional and central governments on, for example, retentions. They also include seminars and workshops on understanding BIM, and many other aspects of the construction industry. To request such training, member associations (or their members) should contact SEC group initially through email@example.com
Sarah Greatorex Executive Secretary
Specialist Engineering Contractors' Group
Esca House 34 Palace Court London W2 4JG
Tel: 020 7313 4819
Fax: 020 7727 9268
Download PDF Map to office
SEC Group Wales/Cymru - Executive Secretary
Specialist Engineering Contractors' Group
Garden House', Tyle House Close, Llanmaes, Vale of Glamorgan, CF61 2XZ Tel: 01446 790159 mobile: 07795 394499
SEC Group Scotland Executive Secretary
The Walled Garden Bush Estate
Midlothian EH26 0SB
Tel:0131 445 5577
Fax: 0131 445 5548
SEC Group Northern Ireland (launching on 22/10/13) Executive Secretary
25 Prospect Road
Bangor Co Down BT20 5DA
Tel: 028 9147 9527
Fax: 028 9146 8641