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Birmingham Post
Birmingham Post
David Laister

Construction industry transformation eyed by sector tech specialist with enhanced product launch

The team behind a leading Hull-based construction management platform is promising to help transform the industry with a latest update.

Sypro, part of The 55 Group, is providing a universal tool that can standardise digital management processes. Until now it has been largely tied to new engineering contracts, but the new version of the software will mean that it can be used across a much larger range.

It has a track record of aiding the delivery of projects across the globe, with a combined value of more than £30 billion. This includes four Nightingale hospitals, 22 Covid-related schemes, and electrical infrastructure works for the National Grid. The changes mean that Contract Manager will now be able to serve a larger portion of the market, with the platform’s 5,000 existing users able to widen the scope.

Read more: Hull City signs up with Sypro for asset management software

Dr Stuart Kings, strategic lead at Sypro, said: “We believe that this latest version of Contract Manager will be truly transformative in how construction contracts are administered. While new engineering contracts make up a good portion of the construction contract market, there is still a large section of the industry that opts for alternative types.

“The key difference in these different types is the terminology used, but the latest update of Contract Manager breaks down these barriers and takes a bespoke approach to each contract type and how it is managed.”

As well as supporting projects in the UK, the latest update is also well placed to serve Sypro’s significant international portfolio, with terminology translation also available.

Dr Kings said: “Two of the biggest problems the construction industry faces are a reticence to digitise and the legacy of oppositional rather collaborative approaches to contracts. The industry has also been slow to share data more widely, but it’s this data sharing that has allowed this new functionality to ensure a bespoke approach across any type of contract a user may need.

Dr Stuart Kings, left, and group chief executive Gerard Toplass. (The 55 Group)

“Now, Contract Manager can push the industry forward in terms of greater standardisation and an understanding that software can help tackle some of the industry’s key issues – leading by example as a tool that construction businesses are able to use as a standardised system within their toolkits.”

It comes as all brands at The 55 Group have achieved G-Cloud 13 status within the Crown Commercial Service (CCS) framework. Going live later this year, it is the government's list of approved companies that can compete for and deliver cloud services, hosting, and software solutions to public sector organisations. Alongside Sypro, which already held accreditaton, steps up procurement specialist Pagabo, social value solutions firm Loop and digital-first training platform Tequ.

Many of the brands’ client base is within the public sector across multiple markets including construction, with this new accreditation described as showing the dedication to providing innovative solutions across project lifecycles. Gerard Toplass, chief executive of The 55 Group, said: “Gaining G-Cloud 13 status is a fantastic achievement for all our brands – it is a sign of high-quality products, great customer service, being ambitious innovators and being a quality provider in your specific field. Our clients are now able to evaluate, procure, build and manage their assets through accredited products.

“This is recognition of our collective success, acknowledging the forward-thinking nature of our products and how they fulfil the needs of the public sector. Clients can be secure in the knowledge that these services and products are cutting-edge and work the way they need them to."

Pagabo is also in the process of launching a new framework to support public sector clients with sourcing temporary and permanent staff across a range of operational roles. It has been brought to market on behalf of contracting authority Red Kite Learning Trust, and will run for four years from November.

Available to all public sector bodies including schools, universities, local authorities, emergency services, NHS organisations, health and social care providers and housing associations, managing director Jason Stapley, said: “We know that sourcing staff – especially on short notice – is stressful for businesses, so this framework has been designed to make that process quick and easy, while providing total peace of mind around compliance and making sure staff are suitable for an organisation and its needs.

"Appointed agencies will need to be fully aware of and compliant with all employment legislation and there will be a requirement for agencies to demonstrate that all pre-employment and safeguarding checks have been carried out, along with DBS checks where relevant.”

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