Press release

Highways Agency calls on suppliers to showcase their achievements and best practice

The Highways Agency is today (23 June) urging those in its supply chain to do themselves justice by providing examples of leading performance, innovation and efficient service – as it launches its supplier recognition scheme for 2014.

The annual recognition scheme highlights the vital contribution made by the Agency’s suppliers who help it operate, maintain and improve the strategic road network in England.

With more than 90 per cent of the work on England’s motorways and major trunk roads carried out by the supply chain, the Agency is asking as many as possible to put themselves forward for awards across seven key areas.

Entries are open from today until 24 September 2014.

Previous winners, including small and medium enterprises, have found it an asset to be publicly recognised by the Agency. Those who do not win can still receive recognition for their efforts by becoming highly commended.

The 2014 awards come at a time when the Agency is working towards becoming a government owned company – with £24 billion worth of improvements pledged for the next five years. This means we need our supply chain to help us become even more innovative and efficient.

Suppliers in direct and indirect contact with the Agency, including through joint ventures and the extended supply chain, can put themselves forward for awards across all aspects of the Agency’s business.

Meanwhile, as health and safety is a vital part of our work, for the first time we have extended the scope of the category. The seven key areas of the scheme are:

  • Building and sustaining capability (new)
  • Customer experience (new)
  • Delivering sustainable value and solutions
  • Managing down cost/improving value
  • Promoting diversity and inclusion
  • Supply chain management
  • Safety, health and wellbeing (which includes)
    • Public/road user safety
    • Road worker safety
    • Occupational health and wellbeing

Head of supplier development, Simon Diggle said:

It is really important that suppliers submit entries in as many categories as possible this year – not simply their strongest ones.

We are here to do the judging and they may not realise how trailblazing something they have done is until they put it forward.

It may not matter how small the innovation is, when applied across the full Highways Agency programme it can have a big impact.

We also have two new categories relevant to good customer service and developing skills and capabilities in the workplace - so there are further opportunities to be recognised.

Last year specialist suppliers, Concrete Repairs Ltd, won a supply chain management award for their work alongside Amey. They helped develop an innovative solution for some complex structural repairs needed at the M5 Quinton Interchange and kept disruption to a minimum.

Chairman of Concrete Repairs Ltd, Dave Burgess, said:

We were very happy to receive the award in 2013 and look forward to supporting the scheme again this year.

The award certainly improved our company profile for further highway structure repair projects.

The scheme is not just about first tier suppliers, the awards provides smaller companies with the chance to stand out from the crowd. In fact around 24 per cent of the Agency’s £2.2billion procurement expenditure goes towards small and medium sized companies (SME’s).

SME, Electrokinetic, has previously been highly commended alongside contractor, Interserve, when it delivered an innovative solution to reinforce the soil of a failing embankment on the A21 in Kent.

Managing Director of Electrokinetic, John Lamont-Black, said:

Gaining recognition from the Highways Agency really helped us gain momentum in the marketplace.

It increased potential clients’ confidence in the new technology, which can be difficult to establish when you are starting off. This helped lead to further work, including with local authorities.

At the time this was our first project for the Agency and also the first time that the main works contractor had used the technique. Full guidance and entry forms can be found on the Highways Agency website.

]General enquiries

Members of the public should contact the Highways Agency Information Line on 0300 123 5000

Media enquiries

Journalists should contact the Highways Agency press office on 0844 693 1448 and use the menu to speak to the most appropriate press officer.