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Finding staff

Thank you for your excellent feature on the boom in business in the GCC Gulf countries (NCE 7 February).

The rate of growth of major projects and the speed at which they are being implemented is unprecedented and posing very tough challenges for consultants and contractors alike.

For consultants the challenge is finding capable staff to deliver projects at increasing speed and with more innovation.

In Halcrow our search for them reaches far and wide. Our total staff in the region has reached 1,500, and in our 300 strong water and power business alone there are 31 nationalities, and only 16% are from the UK. Further, we carry out some of the study and design work across our global network of offices, including UK, US, Argentina and Pakistan.

To put it another way, we aren't able or willing to see the challenge as one which can be met from sourcing solely from UK. The only way in which we can react is by looking to source staff and to deliver the work globally.

MICHAEL NORTON, managing director, water and power, Halcrow,

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