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Ground engineering market still “difficult”

Too many companies scrabbling for too few jobs is making the ground engineering market challenging, according to Roger Bullivant director John Patch.

“The only way to enhance margins in these conditions is to offer value engineering,” he said. “But this need for innovation means that in real terms things are improving. We also need to be careful not to talk the industry down although there needs to be a balance between realism and optimism.”

Patch also said that main contractors and project managers have higher expectations than ever before. “If they are talking to you, then it is a given that your tender price is in the right ballpark,” he explained. “What they are more interested in is what more you can offer than other tenderers in terms of services, reliability and programme delivery.

“This is not a bad thing overall – it is pushing up professionalism in the industry – but it does mean that the time taken to secure a job is growing and in some cases takes twice as long as before.”

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