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Preparing a Construction Invitation to Tender? All You Need to Know about Waste Management

Embed your waste management strategy across the supply chain by building it into the invitation to tender

Construction companies and project managers understand the importance of a waste management strategy. For one thing, the construction sector – responsible for 33% of all waste in the UK and 45% of its carbon emissions according to WRAP – is a key focus for the Government, as ministers attempt to meet climate change targets.
Leaving aside the regulatory or legislative imperative, a successful waste management policy will deliver significant commercial benefits. Skip hire in combination with segregation of waste streams will enable greater levels of recycling, resulting in cheaper disposal costs and boosting profitability.
How much progress is the construction sector making in this area? Of the 77 metric tonnes of construction waste generated each year, 24% is still being sent to landfill. The answer is to consider implementing a waste management strategy right from the moment that a project is planned.
Procurement Is Key
Improved procurement practice can also help to cut down the amount of waste sent to landfill. Every invitation to tender should look to emphasise the importance of waste management policy. The tender is the project manager’s opportunity to underline its commitment to efficient use of materials and high standards of waste management right across the supply chain & and to ensure that sub-contractors collaborate at an early stage to ensure success.
In practice, that means a threefold focus on strategic waste management as part of the invitation to tender. Throughout the supply chain, sub-contractors must be asked to set out:

How they will implement your plans for ‘designing out waste’ and ‘designing for deconstruction’. The design process is a crucial opportunity to target waste management, with an emphasis on using materials with greater potential for reuse and recycling, rather than those that produce the greatest amount of waste.
How they will help you implement your Site Waste Management Plan . While SWMPs are no longer mandatory for large construction projects, developing such a plan is the best way to turn a waste management strategy into practical actions that will deliver regulatory compliance and commercial gain. It should include forecasts for waste, details of how waste will be reduced, and plans for waste recovery, such as segregation and skip hire, for example.
How they will report back on performance. Unless sub-contractors provide robust performance statistics using industry-standard measurement methods and metrics, it won’t be possible to monitor progress against agreed targets, or hold them to account.

WRAP offers model wordings for procurement managers who are thinking about how to incorporate these concepts into their invitations to tender. But the bottom line is that unless the tender documents ask the right questions about sub-contractors’ ability to comply with waste management policies, and what these policies will mean for their pricing, their tenders won’t deliver the desired outcomes.
Focus on Transparency
Control and visibility should be crucial considerations throughout this process. Some sub-contractors’ tenders include packages that incorporate their own waste management practices, which may seem convenient. But once on site, such sub-contractors often end up using the facilities offered there, leaving the project paying for a service it isn’t actually receiving. Equally, where sub-contractors do deliver their own solutions, it is difficult to maintain oversight and transparency.
Dealing with such issues throughout the supply chain at the earliest opportunity is the key to a successful waste management strategy. Getting the invitation to tender right is the first step to securing the benefits such a strategy can deliver.

Waste management should be a key focus for any construction invitation to tender.
Waste management strategy must be a central part of the planning stage for construction projects.
Sub-contractors must be asked how they will meet your waste management targets and standards.

Find out more about the cost efficiencies of good waste management practice. Download: The Ultimate Waste Management Toolkit for the Construction Manager