Roundtable event: Construction payments – challenges and innovative solutions
On 16th March, leading construction businesses shared the challenges and issues they face at a Construction Industry Payments event hosted by Open ECX and Optal.
The one-day event saw senior commercial and financial professionals from companies such as Kier Group, Lakehouse Contracts, SISK Group and United Living come together at Mastercard’s Canary Wharf offices to discuss the problems they encounter tracking and managing Sub Contractor applications while complying with the UK Construction Act and the new Duty to Report legislation.
Among the key points emerging from the discussions were:
- The requirement for greater education to be given to subcontractors regarding how the construction payment process works
- An appreciation of the problems caused by complex construction payment applications… and the volume of them issued/received
- The importance of increasing transparency between contractor and subcontractor
The event also saw our CEO, Matthew Jones, give a short presentation on Open ECX’s WebContractor solution and Andy Downes, General Manager of Optal UK, introduce their payment facility.
Delegates were then asked to discuss how effective these solutions might be in solving the construction payment challenges they had shared during the morning session.
Matthew Jones said, “The event was a huge success. We found it really valuable to hear what payment-related challenges construction industry professionals face on a regular basis and the impact these issues can have on their businesses as well as their subcontractors.
“I’d like to thank everyone who attended for coming along and contributing to the discussions so openly. I hope they took as much from the day as we did.”
Andy Downes added: “Feedback from the delegates was very encouraging. It seems there’s an appetite for construction payment software that simplifies the payment process, helping to increase payment visibility and flexibility which in turn strengthens the relationships between contractors and subcontractors.”
Open ECX, the fastest growing e-trading community in construction, and global corporate payment solutions provider, Optal, partnered in January 2017 to introduce payment solutions specifically tailored to meet the needs of the construction industry.
Combined with Open ECX’s WebContractor solution, Optal’s payment solution gives construction businesses simple, straightforward access to competitive subcontractor payment facilities. The solution helps businesses automate and improve the speed of payments to the construction supply chain, reducing the time and personnel costs associated with manual payment processes while improving both trading relationships and retention rates.