Chair of the post-Grenfell building regulations review Dame Judith Hackitt has warned the industry has one chance to deliver a tough competency oversight body or “it will be done to them”.
In her final report published in May, Hackitt challenged the whole of the construction industry to work together to improve professional competency, creating an oversight body which would regulate the sector.
Hackitt cautioned she is now looking for a joined-up response from industry rather than a “plethora of different systems”.
“I think it’s possible that they can do it. I think they have one chance to deliver, but I’ve been very clear they have to come back within 12 months or it will be done to them,” said Hackitt.
“It’s not something that can be kicked into the long grass…what we absolutely don’t want is a plethora of different systems. The biggest issue not coming up with a competency scheme, it is coming up with a joined up, coherent competency scheme.”
A sub-group of the Industry Response Group – a selection of industry professionals advising the government on construction issues post-Grenfell – has pledged to create the overarching body by March 2019.
In May the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE), which has been carrying out its own review into professional competency, said a new regulatory framework for competencies would be “critical” in ensuring quality and consistency is maintained across the industry.
Hackitt was speaking during a webinar for building industry professionals, explaining different aspects of her 156-page report.