FIS has joined other leading construction groups in signing the RICS Conflict Avoidance Pledge. Commenting on the signing, FIS CEO, Iain McIlwee stated:
“Signing the pledge underpins our commitment to creating a better environment for our supply chain. It isn’t rocket science, in fact it underpins many of the values we expect of the FIS community and were instilled in me by my Mum! The Pledge is about creating and maintaining good business relationships, and dealing with problems early and amicably and working collaboratively to ensure projects are delivered on time, on budget and without the need to waste huge amounts of money on legal disputes.
The construction industry spends around 1.6% of its total expenditure in the UK on legal services, which compares unfavourably to the UK economy’s median spend of 0.8%. This is because we have created an adversarial environment built on win lose contract negotiations. We have made the contract more important than the project – we have even started calling ourselves contractors rather than constructors! We need to consign this 20th Century thinking to the past as it stands in the way of progress and undermines attempts to drive up quality and reduce waste. The RICS Avoidance Pledge and corresponding Conflict Avoidance Process (CAP) are part of an industry wide commitment to change this and we are eager to support and encourage others in and around our community to do the same”.
Martin Burns, Head of Dispute Resolution Services (DRS), Research & Development at the RICS stated:
“It is great that we have leading trade bodies like FIS supporting the pledge and actively encouraging their members to sign and adhere to the terms laid out. The culture in construction needs to change, but change will openly happen when enough people take that first step to being better and believe that others can and will change too.”
As part of signing, FIS is encouraging all members to sign the Conflict Avoidance Pledge and working with wide industry groups to ensure that the core principles are embedded in future editions of standard construction contracts.
We believe in collaborative working and the use of early intervention techniques throughout the supply chain, to try to resolve differences of opinion before they escalate into disputes.
Wording of the RICS Conflict Avoidance Pledge
We recognise the importance of embedding conflict avoidance mechanisms into projects with the aim of identifying, controlling and managing potential conflict, whilst preventing the need for formal, adversarial dispute resolution procedures. We commit our resources to embedding these into our projects.
We commit to working proactively to avoid conflict and to facilitate early resolution of potential disputes.
We commit to developing our capability in the early identification of potential disputes and in the use of conflict avoidance measures. We will promote the value of collaborative working to prevent issues developing into disputes.
We commit to work with our industry partners to identify, promote and utilise conflict avoidance mechanisms.
On signing the pledge an organisation will be listed on the Conflict Avoidance Directory as Bronze, Silver or Gold.
Bronze verified – This indicates that the individual, business or organisation is a signatory to the CA Pledge.
Silver verified – This indicates that the individual, business or organisation is a signatory to the CA Pledge AND has taken formal steps to incorporate policies to give effect to their commitment to avoiding and effectively managing disputes.
Gold verified – This indicates that the individual, business or organisation is a signatory to the CA Pledge AND has taken formal steps to incorporate policies to give effect to their commitment, conflict avoidance and dispute management procedures AND is actively engaging in such policies.
- To mark signing the pledge, FIS is hosting a webinar (Midday, 25th March) aimed at helping members avoid disputes and embrace the RICS Conflict Avoidance Process – you can book your place here.
- You can find out more about the Conflict Avoidance Process (CAP) supporting the Conflict Avoidance Pledge in the FIS Contractual Toolkit or email questions through to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Individual Businesses can Sign the RICS Conflict Avoidance Pledge here
Visit the FIS Contractual and Legal Hub here