May 13 2014

Govt says ‘Buoyant long-term growth in construction’

Crane graphFigures just released from the ONS (Office for National Statistics) showed that construction sector output in Q1 2014 grew by 5.4% over the same quarter last  year, and 0.6% in Q1 over Q4 2013.

Construction constitutes a sizeable proportion of the UK’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and is leading indicator of economic performance.  The sector’s growth has been revised upward to 2.3% for this year, forecasting sustained growth over the coming months, with London far exceeding original expectations.

Buoyant long-term growth

Two-thirds of the growth was made up by new construction projects, the remainder made up by repair and maintenance work.

As can be seen in the graph below, the non-seasonally (NSA) and seasonally (SA) adjusted volume measures both show a gradual recovery trend for total output in the construction sector. With new work increasing by 6.7% and repair & maintenance increasing by 5.8%, when compared with March 2013, the Office of National Statistics (ONS) characterises the performance as ‘showing buoyant long-term growth’.

ONS stats 2014

Source: Construction: Output & Employment – Office for National Statistics

CONJECT clients demonstrate the upward trend

Residential construction is leading growth, although there is expansion across CONJECT clients in infrastructure, construction and maintenance sectors already this year. Infrastructure projects including the Heysham M6 link, for which contractor Costain is using CONJECT for its collaboration needs, was put on hold several years ago but commenced last quarter. In construction, Balfour Beatty is using CONJECT to manage the delivery of a 20-story student apartment block plus three multi-story wings for the University of Birmingham, whilst in repair and maintenance, customers are using CONJECT for the renovation and refurbishment of The Institute of Engineering and Technology premises at Savoy Place, and The Canadian High Commission on Trafalgar Square.

On the back of NIESR upgrading its growth forecast for the UK economy to 2.9% in 2014, a cautious optimism about the returning health of the construction sector is increasingly proving warranted.

Have you experienced an upturn of activity in your business’s sector this year? Please share your experience and views in the comments.

About the author

Michelle Mason

Michelle Mason leads the UK and MEAP Marketing team, with far too many years in B2B marketing to mention. A CONJECT newbie, Michelle is eagerly climbing a steep learning curve.

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