VINCI Facilities works with a number of local, district and county councils, managing clients’ property portfolios and providing innovative solutions to help meet their specific targets and business aspirations
We work with many local authority clients, including Lincolnshire County Council, Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council, Cardiff Council, Sheffield City Council, and Camden Council, to name a few. Our clients have benefited from solutions ranging from design and construction, through to operational maintenance of hard and soft FM services, providing a true end-to-end delivery service.
Examples of work we have completed include the procurement of social housing, creation of bespoke IT solutions, refurbishment of both occupied and void residential properties, and the ongoing maintenance of facilities for all three emergency services, schools, council offices and more.
Recognising the financial strain that many local authorities are faced with, VINCI Facilities places a strong focus on creating efficiencies and delivering added value, with, for example, savings of >£2.3m being achieved for Lincolnshire County Council and >£3.5m of social value activities being delivered for Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council.
Philip James, Contracts Manager, Camden Council.
VINCI Facilities has played an integral role in the success of this ground-breaking facility. This includes providing technical project management services during the three-year development and construction phase, and ongoing FM solutions now that the facility is operational.
The contract sees the majority of FM works self-delivered by a directly-employed team in order to maximise levels of control, quality and reliability.
This team work as a cohesive unit with the council, operating a ‘one team’ approach. So successful is the collaboration that the partnership received the One Team award at the Government Property Awards.
Keen to drive continuous improvement, contract personnel are trained in Lean methodologies and have held ‘Lessons Learnt’ sessions with key stakeholders to capture and showcase key learnings from the contract.
Building Solutions’ partnership with Camden Council began with the firm delivering small works up to £500k in value as part of the council’s Better Homes framework. Following that success, Building Solutions has since been appointed to the council’s Property Works framework, which sees it deliver works up to £5m in value.
The contract benefits from a dedicated Resident Liaison Manager, who meets residents regularly to discuss the works and address any areas of concern.
A proactive and flexible team ensure that any challenges are swiftly addressed. For example, when two tower blocks unexpectedly received fire notices for failing to meet requirements, the team revised the schedule of works to prioritises the two buildings and successfully made them safe and compliant within just two months.
Building Solutions has secured ten contracts with the council worth a total of £202m. These contract include replacement windows, externals, aids/adaptations, void works, and the council’s Decent Homes programme.
Since the partnership commenced 15 years ago, Building Solutions is the only contractor that’s remained continually appointed by the council, enabling it to lend stability to the transformation of the housing stock.
To maximise the efficiency of the works, Building Solutions heavily invests in digital technologies. This has included issuing tablets to all colleagues and utilising Microsoft’s PowerBI in order to provide real-time performance analysis.
In an exemplary commitment, Building Solutions’ work goes further than simply refurbishing the properties, with the organisation delivering £3.47m worth of social value activities across Sandwell since the partnership began.
This 25-year contract requires a flexible approach from VINCI Facilities, with any major life-cycle works being conducted outside of school hours in order to minimise disturbance.
To improve sustainability and create cost savings, a gain share mechanism has been introduced that sees the schools and VINCI Facilities share any financial savings created by the introduction of energy saving initiatives.
The team utilise a Lean Six Sigma methodology to eliminate waste and improve efficiency. One recent Lean initiative saw the introduction of a dedicated app for smart phones and tablets, designed to aid the handling of damage reports.
Added value is provided through the provision of complimentary works. For instance, the team recently donated materials and labour to help refurbish a local youth centre.
This £1.75m contract sees a strong focus placed on self-delivery, with VINCI Facilities assigning 68 directly-employed personnel. This facilitates improved levels of control, accountability and reliability, while also allowing long-term relationships to be formed with the client’s team.
To enhance relationships further still, the contract team act as an extended part of the school’s workforces, embedding a ‘one team’ approach that sees colleagues do whatever is needed to ensure customer satisfaction. One recent example saw a mobile engineer step in to supervise students after a teacher unexpectedly fell ill.
The team also regularly volunteer their time to support community causes that are close to the school’s heart; for example, they recently redecorated the offices of a local homeless charity.
Due to the nature of this facility, Building Solutions placed an overriding focus on understanding the users’ care needs and the sensory, cognitive and physical constraints of dementia.
For example, to create a homely atmosphere, the design incorporates an electric fire that creates a smoke effect using water vapour, and an internal corridor that replicates a street – complete with shop awnings and street lights.
In addition, non-reflective surfaces were used, as many residents don’t perceive themselves to have aged and can find their reflection confusing/distressing.
The project was recognised with a CLAW (Consortium of Local Authorities Wales) Award, with the judges commenting: “This difficult building has been cleverly adapted to successfully create a positive environment for a very worthy cause.”