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Judges' Supreme Award

Winner: Skanska UK

Skanska is the winner of this year’s Judges’ Supreme Award for its exemplary approach to sustainability, which is now more than ever a fundamental part of the company’s ethos.

Sustainability is a defining issue for the industry, one that has significant consequences in both the short and long term. Alongside skills, it represents the biggest challenge facing businesses in UK construction.

Skanska is clearly leading the way when it comes to meeting those challenges. In winning the award for Sustainable Company of the Year, the judging panel recognised that the contractor delivers on its promises to find sustainable solutions to the projects it takes on in a manner that is unrivalled.

“Its ethos and behaviours ensure they will deliver a more sustainable outcome,” the judges said of its approach to completing projects.

Skanska exhibits commendable commitment to making sure the focus on sustainability is embedded up and down the company. Internally, the contractor measures its performance against benchmarks written into its business strategy.

The firm’s ‘Green’ mark surpasses industry compliance and high BREEAM scores, and 87 per cent of its revenue comes from projects meeting that standard.

In continually driving best practice and renewing its focus, the Supreme Award recognises how Skanska strives to lead by example.

The firm invests cash into making its own working environments more sustainable – just one of the ways it instils sustainable principles into the culture of the business.

Skanska ensures low-carbon, energy-saving and environmentally friendly behaviours are at the forefront of everything the business does – from strategy to recycling to travelling to work – by engaging staff at all levels.

Through incentivising green behaviours and rewarding innovation, every employee is motivated to exceed industry standards in sustainability.

As well as training and reward schemes on green issues for their supply chain, Skanska’s torch-bearing is highlighted by its representation on more than 60 green bodies across industry, government and think tanks.

Skanska is also this year’s winner in the Sustainable Project of the Year, as part of a joint venture with Balfour Beatty.

The M25 improvement project was tackled with an approach that eschewed the need to construct additional motorway lanes, saving 80 per cent embodied carbon – and £6.8m – per kilometre completed.

In addition to this accolade, Skanska achieved a high commendation for the design and construction of the Brent Civic Centre, a BREEAM Outstanding building, in the same category.

It was also highly commended for its Borough Viaduct in the Project of the Year (over £50m) category.

Unquestionably demonstrating its credentials as a business putting sustainability at the heart of everything it does, motivating and rewarding its people and wanting to lead by example, the judges said: “Skanska has set the standard the industry should aspire to.”

Setting such an impressive bar in such a vital aspect of the industry is just one of the reasons Skanska has been deemed a thoroughly deserving winner of the Judges’ Supreme Award at the Construction News Awards 2014.

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