Covid-19 pandemic should bring sustainable improvements to the construction sector
- Blueprint Media
Steven Dunn, Site Manager at one of the UK’s most technically adept glass interior specialists, Indeglas, is convinced that a number of positive outcomes will emerge from the construction sector’s time of trial that has been the Covid-19 epidemic.
“One-way systems on construction sites, introduced to limit the risks of Covid-19 infection have created much safer, clearer routes for loading of tools, plant and materials and must surely be here to stay. We constantly look for ways to improve efficiencies and work safer and being able to plan access routes in the knowledge that there will be clear thoroughfares makes a massive difference.
“Previously, passageways and stairways on site could be heavily congested with operatives going in one direction manoeuvring complex equipment or heavy panels of glass confronting other trades and operatives coming in the opposite direction, usually with resulting in lost time while priorities and methodologies were revised. The new protocols, whilst created for an entirely different reason have clearly demonstrated how efficient and much safer one-way systems on construction sites are.”
Steven continues: “The improved cleanliness and hygiene procedures resulting from the need to reduce risk of infection due to Covid 19 has created much improved construction site washroom, toilet and mess facilities, a move which has been long overdue and welcomed by every single person working or visiting project locations.
“During my career I have witnessed canteens, rest areas and toilet facilities on sites ranging from squeaky clean to squalid. Formerly this would have been a welfare or procedural issue but in my opinion it should always have featured as a significant health and safety issue and I really hope that following the enforced hygiene measures introduced to reduce risk that finding facilities which are not possible to use are firmly a thing of the past.
“I for one have been pleased with the improvements and I’m sure I’m not alone in hoping they are here to stay.”
A time-served joiner who operated in partnership with his now retired former journeyman, Harry Bedborough, Steven formerly worked as a sub-contractor, the majority of his work being carried out for Indeglas owner, Jeanette MacIntyre, and for the businesses in which she had a management role, including Neslo Interiors, Zenith Interiors and Deko Scotland over a period of 30 years.
When Jeanette staged a management buyout of Deko Scotland and, in 2017, re-branded the business as Indeglas – Danish for ‘internal glass’ – Steven and Harry were part of that journey and became an increasingly integrated partnership as they collaborated to installing the Company’s increasingly sophisticated internal glass screens.
Today, Indeglas, sole distributor in the UK and Ireland for the product range of award-winning glass manufacturer DEKO of Denmark, continues to be engaged in a range of high-profile, award winning buildings throughout Scotland and beyond.
Now, recently appointed Site Manager currently with 14 operatives under his supervision, including son, Andrew who began his joinery apprenticeship with Indeglas in 2016, Steven is responsible for the site management of an internal glass screen work package with value in excess of £1.4 million with responsibilities ranging from man management, technicalities relating to the installation of glass screens as well as logistics and health and safety.
“I’m enjoying it; it’s so different from the role of sub-contacting joiner, but I’m well supported as I’m learning a massive amount. No two projects are the same, and long experience in the industry helps, though working constantly with an iPad takes a bit of getting used to”, he said.
“Fortunately, I’m a fast learner and I have been helped by Tom Russell, former Indeglas Site Manager, who retired recently. He has been a valuable mentor to me ever since I worked for him a couple of years ago on Indeglas’s Forth Valley College, Falkirk Campus glass screen installation project.
“When Tom decided it was time for him to retire, I asked his advice about my suitability for applying for his job. He was very encouraging, and he is still there for me at the end of a phone if there is an element on a project that needs talked through.
“Andrew is also employed by Indeglas and has thrived. I have seen a big difference in him. He is now a confident young qualified joiner, still accumulating experience and, like me, looking forward to getting beyond these Covid restrictions.”
Because they lived in the same “bubble”, both Steven and Andrew got back to working together in June last year, earlier than most, since they had been in the same ‘family bubble’.
“I hope we can all come out of this period stronger than when we went in. Lessons have certainly been learned and I hope we can profit from them”, he concludes.
A version of this story appeared here:
“The improved cleanliness and hygiene procedures resulting from the need to reduce risk of infection due to Covid 19 has created much improved construction site washroom, toilet and mess facilities, a move which has been long overdue and welcomed by every single person working or visiting project locations."
Two senior managers promoted to Director level
Derek Johnston has been appointed Operations Director and Iain McAlpine has been made Commercial Director at Indeglås.
Indeglas moves into England
Indeglas makes the move into England with the appointment of our new Technical Manager, Peter Mulligan.
Audits bring Indeglas to full compliance and Tier 1 status
To demonstrate our expertise we have been consolidating and documenting our processes across Quality Management, Health and Safety, Environmental Management and Building Confidence.
Challenges facing smooth project management
By Derek Johnston, Operations Director
Clear to see what makes Indeglas stand out
By Iain McAlpine, Commercial Director
Past and present create legacy for the future
Three generations of carpentry & joinery apprentices are playing a key role in the construction of Forth Valley College’s new Falkirk Campus.
High-Profile Project Prompts Return of Key Skills to Construction Sector
After decades of travelling throughout the UK during his career in construction, Tom Russell had decided to give up the commute and hang up his hard hat, but then a prestigious project landed on his doorstep to lure him out of retirement.
It’s Not Just ‘The Right Thing To Do’ – It’s What’s Right for Our Business
When we heard about the Disability Confident scheme, it just made sense to sign up. As a place to work, Indeglas has always focused on creating an inclusive environment where everyone is treated equally. This allows employees to work to their fullest potential, which is what gets the best results for the business.
Indeglas Wins Vote of Confidence for its Commitment to Disabled Employment
Specialist construction contractor Indeglas has been recognised by the government’s Disability Confident scheme for its commitment to the recruitment and retention of disabled staff.
Back to Work Measures
Indeglas has undertaken a series of steps within the office to support social distancing and a safe return to work as soon as Government guidelines suggest it is safe to do so.
Scottish Apprenticeship Week 2021 - Interview with recently qualified apprentice Andrew Dunn
To mark Scottish Apprenticeship Week (1 - 5 March), Indeglas managing director Jeanette MacIntyre interviewed recently qualified apprentice Andrew Dunn about his experiences of the apprenticeship.
Major accolade for Jeanette MacIntyre of Indeglas as she is inducted into Edinburgh Napier University SACI Hall of Fame
The outstanding achievements of Jeanette MacIntyre, committed entrepreneur and founder of glass specialist Indeglas, have been formally recognised by her alma mater with her induction last month (June 2021) into its prestigious Hall of Fame. The School of Arts and Creative Industries (SACI) at Edinburgh Napier University (ENU) awarded the rare accolade to Jeanette in tribute to her creative talent as well as acknowledging the significant contribution she has made to the built environment sector.