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BAA incentive drive to end consultants' hourly pay

HOURLY-RATE PAYMENTS to consultants are to be axed by airport operator BAA in favour of a new reward system based on 'value-added contribution' - once it works out what to measure.

The change is the next step in BAA's plans to 'rethink construction', said group technical director Mike Roberts. While the industry moves towards new methods of working, he said, 'so far there have been no step-changes in remuneration'.

'There is no incentive to improve efficiency or eliminate waste in hourly rates,' he added. Roberts said BAA would work on new payment options with its framework partners to reduce costs to the operator but increase profit to consultants.

The review follows the decision by BAA to reshape its framework teams. These are now grouped into clusters devoted to shell and core, infrastructure, fit out and baggage elements of projects rather than allied to specific airports or terminals. This should allow learning to be transferred between schemes.

But at the same time it is dramatically reducing the numbers of its framework consultants in response to a major dip in planned capital spending. Terminal 5 is at least four years away and major projects at Stansted and Gatwick are not expected to start until 2001.

BAA has already slashed its quantity surveying framework consultancy agreements from eight to four. Similar cuts are expected this month to the number of construction managers.

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