We've made five Total Commitments to our stakeholders: to protect and develop people, improve the environment, work with our supply chain and enhance communities.
Delivering on these Commitments is a strategic priority for us. We measure our performance using key performance indicators and challenging targets, so we can make sure we keep improving.
lost time incident rate
We want everyone who comes in contact with our work, on and off site, to go home safe and well. Our teams are always looking at new ways to protect occupational health and reduce the risk of accidents, by increasing safety awareness, encouraging safe behaviours and designing safe site set-ups.
We work hard to ensure that people feel supported while working for us and have initiatives in place to achieve this, such as a digital GP service, mental health first aiders and wellbeing bulletins. We run an employee assistance programme that gives everyone access to legal and counselling advice if they need it, and have extended the programme to more than 6,000 subcontractors.
Our human rights policy states our commitment to the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights and the UN Declaration of Human Rights. We have an independently run Raising Concerns facility to ensure that people are empowered to report any worries they may have.
Training and careers
training days per employee per year
Working on diversity
We are working hard to address issues of diversity and inclusion that exist across the sector. We do so in a number of ways – by providing flexible working patterns, actively seeking to recruit from a wide pool of candidates, encouraging children and young people to consider a career in construction through our involvement with schools and colleges, and offering a variety of apprenticeship and professional qualification sponsorship programmes. More than 500 people were sponsored to achieve NVQs and professional qualifications in 2022.
Investing in technology
We invested £3.7m in technology and business innovation in 2022: this increases our employees’ working experience and the service we give our clients. As well as using existing technology, such as Building Information Modelling, we also develop our own. Examples include our carbon calculator, CarboniCa, and our Social Value Bank.
Improving the environment
Leaders on climate change
reduction in Scope 1 and 2 carbon emissions from 2019 baseline
reduction in operational Scope 3 carbon emissions from 2019 baseline
supply chain (by spend) providing their own carbon data
reduction in carbon emissions from the Group’s vehicle fleet from 2019 baseline
Our goal is net zero carbon by 2030 and we are on track to achieving it. We’ve reduced our Scope 1, 2 and operational Scope 3 emissions by 40% since 2019 and our carbon intensity – carbon emitted per £m revenue - by 95%.
We were the first UK construction company to voluntarily have our targets verified by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi), aligned to preventing temperatures rising above those set out in the Paris Agreement. In 2022, we submitted revised targets for validation that align with a 1.5 degree C scenario. As part of this, we extended our net zero target to include the full total of our Scope 3 emissions (not just operational Scope 3) by 2045. Our revised targets were validated in March 2023.
We will offset any residual carbon transparently, through independently audited projects in the UK that we will help manage, such as the creation of nine woodlands on the Blenheim Estate in Oxfordshire, the restoration of wetlands at Lakenheath Fen and the restoration of peatlands in the Great North Bog in northern England.
In 2022, we were given an ‘A’ by CDP for the third year running for our performance on climate change, one of just 283 companies to be A-listed out of nearly 15,000 scored.
Morgan Sindall Construction has developed a carbon reduction tool, CarboniCa, that enables our project teams and our clients to visualise and monitor the whole-life carbon of a structure, from the materials used to build it through to the energy used to run it. An intelligent tool, CarboniCa can also suggest, at the design stage, where alternative, lower-carbon materials or construction methods could be used. Initially rolled out across our divisions, the CarboniCa will be offered to our supply chain partners to help them tackle carbon further along our supply chain. We have also introduced an internal carbon charge to encourage our teams to keep finding new ways of reducing emissions on our projects.
Much of the carbon we emit is due to our use of heavy vehicles and machinery on site. We’re therefore ramping up the number of hybrid and electric vehicles in our fleet and reducing the use of ‘red diesel’. Housing company Lovell, for example, is rolling out the use of HVO fuel to power generators on its sites. Compared to traditional diesel, HVO fuel – made largely of vegetable oil and waste animal fat - offers significant environmental advantages, achieving a carbon reduction of up to 90%.
A building’s carbon emissions are largely due to the energy used to heat, cool and run it. The Passivhaus design standard cuts down energy use through techniques such as superinsulation, airtightness, high-performance windows and mechanical ventilation. Design, engineering and project delivery company BakerHicks is sponsoring its designers to become Passivhaus certified and Passivhaus buildings are being built by Morgan Sindall Construction and Muse Places.
We measure the biodiversity impacts of our projects and are targeting a net gain where we can, i.e., leaving biodiversity in a better state when we finish. We are signatories to UK Constructors Declare climate and Biodiversity Emergency, and BakerHicks has signed up to Architects Declare and Engineers Declare. We are planting nine woodlands on the Blenheim Estate in Oxfordshire with 28 varieties of trees and clover-rich grass which will provide a home to birds, insects, animals and fungi. We are also building a forest school and amphitheatre on the site, where people can come and learn about biodiversity.
We reduced our total waste by 57% in 2022 and diverted 96% from landfill. We are setting up a waste desk to help us manage our waste more effectively, for example by improving our waste reporting systems and creating waste liaison officers. Our procurement policy is to reuse and recycle where possible and we are taking part in an increasing number of manufacturers’ ‘take-back’ schemes.
Our sustainable water policy commits to monitoring the amount of water we use, improving the efficiency of our water use and eliminating wastage. We use recycled water for dust suppression, cleaning, plant watering, toilets and industrial processes.
Working together with our supply chain
of total invoices paid within 30 days
We see our supply chain as partners who play a strategic role in our success. We are working to keep reducing our average days to pay invoices, in line with the Prompt Payment Code. The relationships we’ve developed with our supply chain help ensure we continue to receive the materials we need for our projects and the highest standards of workmanship.
We helped found and continue to support the Supply Chain Sustainability School which provides free training on energy management, waste, modern slavery, biodiversity, mental health and wellbeing, and other subjects. Our Supply Chain Family, set up 20 years ago, now has over 400 members. Every two years we hold a large-scale networking event where members can meet and discuss new innovations, with each other, with contacts from across the Group, and with our clients.
Working together to make change
Our teams and our supply chain often collaborate on new ways of doing things, such as improving safety or reducing carbon and waste. Examples include a safety cage that stops people from climbing cranes, sourcing a lower-carbon concrete and developing eco-friendly site welfare facilities. We are working with our suppliers to help them reduce their own carbon emissions, and have been awarded Supplier Engagement leader status by CDP.
of social value per £1 spent on 110 projects
per £1 spent
Our goal is to leave a positive legacy in the communities where we work and have often been present, building relationships, trust and opportunities for many years. We offer the bulk of our subcontracts to local small and medium enterprises. We provide job and training opportunities for local young people and disadvantaged groups, including people who have been out of work for a long time and ex-offenders. Our businesses run social enterprise and ‘Knowledge Quads’ and take part in the government’s Kickstart scheme to give work placements to 16- to 24-year olds. Morgan Sindall Property Services runs energy cafes that offer local residents practical advice on reducing their energy bills, which helps mitigate some of the impact of the cost of living crisis as well as cutting carbon emissions.
Measuring social value
Our Social Value Bank forecasts, tracks and measures in monetary terms the value we create for local communities through our work. The tool, which we developed with research and policy consultants, Simetrica-Jacobs, applies best practice valuation methodology from the Treasury Green Book and OECD guidelines.
We have a real opportunity to help tackle climate change and create social value
The built environment is currently responsible for 25% of UK carbon emissions. We can help tackle climate change by reducing our emissions and waste, building energy-efficient buildings, and increasing biodiversity.
We create social value by regenerating the UK's towns and cities, developing and maintaining housing, improving transport and infrastructure, and building and fitting out schools, universities and offices that are healthy and inspiring to work in.
We provide training and work opportunities for people who live in the communities where we work, and engage with local schools and colleges to attract people from all backgrounds into a career in construction.
Sustainable development goals
We support the UN Sustainable Development Goals to ‘end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all’. We consider these six goals to be those where we can have the biggest impact in line with our Total Commitments.