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With the recent publication of two new client-focused guides, this month Martyn Jones reaffirms how important it is – particularly in these challenging times – that our clients have sound advice provided by independent, knowledgeable, and trustworthy advisors.

Back in the 1990s both Latham and Egan recognised the hugely significant role clients play in construction projects – and not just as funders, but in shaping project outcomes, determining the system in which the project team will operate, the project culture, its governance, processes, degree of creativeness and innovativeness etc.

But there is a snag.  Not all clients are frequent procurers of buildings with the expertise of clientship developed through a large pipeline of work. Or have experienced and knowledgeable in-house development departments. Or have long-term, trusting, and open relationships with any consultants, contractors, or manufacturers in their supply chains. To use the language in CESW’s publication, many clients are only in the foothills of their journey to enlightened clientship.

The idea of client advisor is not new. The rationale for client advisors was set out by Egan at the beginning of construction’s transition to the 5th techno-economic paradigm in the report, ‘Accelerating Change’ published in 2002. He said, “… many clients will need help setting bench marks and assembling a competent integrated team [as in the 5th paradigm] to do their construction and for this I am sure independent advice will be required.”

He went on, clients should have access to independent [my emphasis] advice to help them assess and articulate their business needs if they are to achieve successful project outcomes and business solutions.  This advice should meet “…the principles of Rethinking Construction, with confidence that it is given without vested interest in the solution proposed.”

Clearly Egan recognised back then that without help most clients would not be equipped to benefit from the emerging 5th paradigm that has gone on to dominate much of construction’s language, although to a much lesser extent in actual practice. This means much of construction has failed to fully embrace the paradigm Egan promoted, with its emphasis on collaborative, win-win relationships, integrated processes, and networks of often small suppliers increasingly linked through advances in communication technologies.

But how much of this is disappointing progress down to the advice clients receive?  Some clients maintain that they would procure in a more enlightened way but are dissuaded from doing so by their advisors.  On the other hand, advisors argue that it is their clients who are wedded to traditional approaches.

Even though it is now half a century since Egan unleashed his model for industry reform, some of our experienced and enlightened clients have expressed their reservations regarding the advice they receive from their advisors in embracing his principles, never mind moving to those of the emerging 6th paradigm.  They tell us that advice does not always resonate with the Rethinking Construction/Constructing Excellence principles of procuring on best value outcomes achieved through integrated and collaborative teams.

All these years on and we are now moving into a new and challenging 6th paradigm, which appears will be driven by:

This will require a further rethinking and repurposing of construction. This means we need to rethink the advice that clients are receiving and the role of the client advisor, as clients meet the challenges and exploit the opportunities that are opening up ahead of us.

This is where CESW’s latest publication, the ‘Client Advisor Guide’, can play a role. With this guide taking its place alongside our previous publications – ‘Outcome led procurement’ and the ‘Enlightened client’s journey to project quality and compliance’ – clients and their advisors have a cluster of publications they can work with together to help shape their responses to the new paradigm.

In particular, the new ‘Client Advisor Guide’ provides some answers to the following key questions: What is it? What role does the advisor play? Who should provide it? What skills and behaviours are needed? Where and when should the advice be provided in the process?

And there is more. Beyond CESW we now have the ‘Value Toolkit’ to help redefine value and how to measure it and “…enable value-based decision making focused on driving better social, environmental and economic outcomes, improving industry’s impact on current and future generations”.

Welcome to the latest G4C podcast – An Insight into Development and Delivery: Ellie’s Apprenticeship Journey

For this month’s episode of the G4C CESW podcast series, Francesca Lewis chats with Ellie Chissell, Development Apprentice at McCarthy Stone, the UK’s developer and manager of retirement communities. She runs through her experience on rotation through land, development, commercial and construction teams, her choice to specialise in Development, and advice on how to search for and get involved with apprenticeship opportunities.


CESW are proud to announce the launch of the Client Advisor Guide. The guide was published in time for the AGM on the 24th November and was launched at the event by Martyn Jones, former Principal Lecturer at UWE. The publication was designed by Philip Jansseune.

‘Clients and client advisors occasionally clash. This is unfortunate, because the two need each other and great construction projects benefit from the input of specialist professional advice.

So, we have prepared this Client Advisor Guide to define what a client advisor is (so clients know for sure) and how they should behave and operate so that both sides will have a clear expectation of how the relationship can work to everyone’s benefit.’

CLICK HERE to read the full guide now.

We would like to extend huge CONGRATULATIONS to for winning CE National ‘2022


Click on the links for speaker presentations from the day.

Ian Nicholson’s presentation HERE and the resource library link HERE

Louise Lado-Byrnes’s presentation HERE

Allan Wilen’s presentation HERE

RIchard Kochanski’s presentation HERE

See Mary Bennell’s presentation HERE

See Imogen Snell’s presentation HERE


Sponsored by 

Summit Agenda


Ian Nicholson

Ian joined the Hub in December 2020. For Ian, the Value Toolkit provides an ideal opportunity for industry to really embed sustainability into early-stage decision making. He believes the delivery of sustainable infrastructure requires us to consider two key things: high sustainability performance in the projects we deliver; and ensuring we solve the root cause problems and deliver solutions that make our lives more sustainable. The project teams use schemes such as BREEAM and CEEQUAL to guide their decision making and address root causes.  Sustainability presents a greater challenge, specifically identification of the real strategic drivers that they need to deliver and use them to shape the project solution. The Value Toolkit plugs this gap by helping clients and their teams identify their drivers, and then prioritise them to enable comparison of different options, thus finding the optimal solution.

Louise Lado-Byrnes

Louise is a Director and owner of IPInitiatives who developed the IPI Model. She has a background in main contracting in her earlier career, from a degree in construction management and design, and latterly Collaborative Consultancy.

Louise is a trained facilitator, trainer and is a practitioner of using numerous psychometric tools. She has a key interest in people, behaviours and practical implementation of processes. Louise ran some of the first behavioural workshop as part of the procurement and selection process for major frameworks in the early 2000s. Louise is a Director of IPInitiatives responsible for Behavioural Analysis and Facilitation on projects.

Allan Wilen

See Allan’s presentation here

Allan has thirty years of experience analysing and forecasting the UK construction industry. Allan heads Glenigan’s market intelligence service. Glenigan is the trusted provider of UK and the Republic of Ireland of construction project sales leads, market analysis, forecasting, and company intelligence.

Its market intelligence service provides clients with regular on-line comment and analysis on the construction industry, including sector and regional forecasts The research draws upon detailed analysis of Glenigan’s database of planned and active construction projects as well as other economic and market data sources. In addition Allan undertakes custom research and analysis for customers, including leading contractors, product manufacturers and government.

Imogen Snell

Imogen entered the sustainability field with a technical physics background complimented with a deep personal interest in the role of the built environment in creating a sustainable future.

Her involvement in a broad range of building projects, in many sectors and contexts, over the last seven years, has given her a wealth of experience to inform efficient building design through numerous methods and technologies.

Imogen has specific experience in detailed thermal and energy analysis alongside technical knowledge of decarbonisation and the routes to delivering net zero carbon buildings and pathways. Outside of work, Imogen enjoys running and cycling and is a keen board game enthusiast.

Richard Kochanski

I am a retired Chartered Civil Engineer having spent my whole working life working for Tier 1 contractors, (Bouygues UK, Carillion, Mowlem and Alfred McAlpine). I am passionate about the construction industry and working with like minded people in improving it. This is why I have been actively involved with Constructing Excellence for many years. I am very proud to have led the team in producing this guide.

Mary Bennell – Director of the South West Procurement Alliance, the South West regional arm of LHC

Mary has worked in social housing for most of her career, delivering  major refurbishment and regeneration projects. She champions sustainability and net zero projects , providing  procurement solutions to  public sector clients. These will improve and  enhance the energy efficiency of existing  and new buildings, and reduce the costs to the end user  She is currently  the chair of Constructing Excellence South West Smart Construction Theme Group  that focuses on best practice in construction using digital and off site solutions to deliver low carbon buildings.

Natalie King

Natalie has used her legal skills as a qualified Barrister in her construction career to date. Having built a new development region in South Wales in less than two years for Kier Living, with a GDV of £250m, she has expertise in land acquisition, joint ventures, affordable housing and construction.

Natalie is an advocate for women in construction, especially at Board and Senior Management level, and was the Chair of Women in Property South Wales in 2019.

The 2022 Constructing Excellence South West Annual General Meeting (AGM) marks the end of an era as Andrew Carpenter steps down from his role as CEO.

The event, which is set to take place in Somerset Country Club, Taunton on Thursday 24 November is a momentous date in the South West construction calendar, and this year it will focus on the club’s achievements from across the last two decades.

Current CEO, Andrew Carpenter, announced he was standing down from his role as the organisation’s leader earlier this year, and the club’s annual general meeting is his final day in the role.

Each year the AGM welcomes club members, the board and other professionals from within the industry to review CESW’s annual activity, and this year special recognition will be paid to Andrew’s contribution since creating the organisation in 2003.

As well as looking back, the future direction of CESW will also be discussed as the organisation embarks on a new chapter.

Dan Macey, Chair of CESW Board, said: “This year’s annual general meeting will be an incredibly important part of CESW history as Andrew steps down from his role as CEO.

“Throughout the years, Andrew’s contribution to CESW has been significant. His energy, enthusiasm, knowledge and sheer passion for best practice have no doubt been fundamental to the organisation’s success.

“We’re looking forward to welcoming professionals from within the South West construction industry to not only celebrate the last two decades but to also share our plans and ambitions for the future.”

The Annual General Meeting and luncheon runs from 10.00am and 1.00pm on Thursday 24 November at Somerset Country Club, Taunton.

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