M&E contractors hoping to ‘hold on’ through covid crisis

Grant Prior 1 month ago
Share

The latest engineering services sector survey highlights the devastating impact of the coronavirus crisis across the industry.

But contractors remain resilient with 15% even expecting their business to expand by the end of the year.

Predictably nearly three-quarters of firms expect their turnover to fall in the second quarter of 2020, compared to the first quarter.

While looking further ahead to the third quarter of 2020, a similar number of businesses expect turnover to drop with 23% expecting revenue to at least halve.

The figures are the biggest anticipated drop in turnover since the sector business survey began over a decade ago.

One in 20 respondents feared that by the end of Q3 this year their business ‘may not be viable’, while a further 10% said they were unsure about viability.

But 15 per cent of people said they expect their businesses to grow by the end of Q3, with a further 70% cent expecting to continue with turnover either reducing or holding on.

ECA CEO Steve Bratt said: “Although construction has continued to operate through the crisis, at least in part, it is no surprise to see the reductions in turnover and the challenges to business in remaining viable.

“However, the figures also demonstrate our sectors resilience and importance and we shouldn’t forget that in the medium and longer term many of the challenges we face as a nation will provide growth opportunities.”

ECA director of legal and business Rob Driscoll added: “The sector’s unique position within both construction and facilities management has always demonstrated a resilient ability to bounce back.”

In terms of the impact on jobs at the end of Q3, half of businesses expect to have the broadly same number of direct employees while 67% expect wages to be broadly the same although 17% expect wages to fall.

BESA Director of Legal & Commercial Debbie Petford said: “These statistics show the unprecedented damage that this crisis has inflicted on our sector. Despite so many businesses struggling to survive through no fault of their own, it is encouraging to see how resilient the vast majority of the sector is.”

“Government have demonstrated its continued support for businesses throughout this crisis and this should be complimented by industry playing its part too.

“It is critical businesses work together in a collaborative spirit with their supply chain, and it is encouraging to see these principles reflected in the new CLC Contractual Best Practice Guidance and the RICS Conflict Avoidance Pledge, proving the industry can work together in these challenging times.”

SELECT Managing Director Alan Wilson said: “The expected fall in turnover is worrying for the sector, which is why it’s vital for us all to work together during return, restart and beyond.

“We all have a part to play to ensure cashflow is maintained to help those most severely impacted by lockdown.”

Latest news

Top contractors orders down 44% over three months

Wates tops June contracts league with major high-rise flats order
8 hours ago

£110m Dagenham film studio complex approved

Council regeneration company seeking film partner to start the project rolling
1 hour ago

North East carbon capture project to create 5,500 jobs

Construction of £1.8bn project to run for four years
41 mins ago

U+I cuts capital spending by £33m

Work scaled back in coming year but developer bullish about longer term prospects
1 hour ago

Driver killed as concrete smashes through windscreen

Police hunt for lorry shedding its load
29 mins ago

Argent chief to head Oxford Uni £4bn housing partnership

Anna Strongman takes over as CEO of Oxford University Developments in September
17 hours ago

Taziker lands £24m Bristol station refurb contract

First major overhaul of Temple Meads for 25 years
20 hours ago

Plan for £600m North Wales tidal energy lagoon

It is hoped the scheme could be given the green light by 2023
17 hours ago

Keep the industry updated by joining the Enquirer Directory

Membership lets construction know you are open for business now or in the future
2 years ago

BAM to make 150 staff redundant

Drop in demand set to impact 2021 revenue
2 days ago

Bouygues to start on £240m Canning Town scheme

Phase three of Hallsville Quarter regeneration scheme gets green light
1 day ago

“Builders stars of the economy” as construction rebounds

Latest buyers survey shows sharp turnaround in output as lockdown eases
2 days ago

Smart motorways chief moves to Lower Thames Crossing job

Shaun Pidcock takes project director role on UK's longest road tunnel
1 day ago

Flannery trials first electric tele at HS2 site

Skanska Costain Strabag JV to roll out more machines across HS2
2 days ago

Lendlease gets nod to start Manchester town hall revamp

Council agrees to 5 month completion delay as notice to proceed agreed
1 day ago

Drainage supplier Polypipe to axe 250 jobs

Polypipe keeps all facilities open to react to any unexpected rise in demand
1 day ago

Morgan Sindall stars in £250m Glasgow Uni framework

University confirms nine construction partners
1 day ago

Barratt uncovers weak concrete frames at seven high rises

House builder faces £70m bill to remediate high rise flats
2 days ago

McAleer & Rushe starts £68m Birmingham resi tower

37-storey build to rent tower forms part of £120m Exchange Square 2 scheme
2 days ago

CPUK went down owing suppliers more than £9m

Construction Partnership UK Limited brought down by bad debts and Covid-19
2 days ago

Wates resumes full pay for all staff not on furlough

Chief praises staff for great professionalism in the most challenging of conditions
5 days ago

First net-zero carbon London office project approved

Mace advising on £160m project to expand and retrofit former BT HQ
2 days ago

Interserve to start £27m Oldham school job

Work starts this month on Saddleworth secondary school
2 days ago

Construction start date for latest Manchester resi scheme

Work to begin early next year at Bowler’s Yard
2 days ago

£120m rescue package for stalled arts sites

Cultural rescue programme to restart work on theatres, galleries,museums and cinemas
2 days ago

Canary Wharf Contractors could cut 100 jobs

Another round of redundancies as projects come to an end with no replacements in pipeline
5 days ago

Tower crane lifts end long climb to work for operators

Laing O'Rourke trials mast climbing lifts for tower crane operators at London site
5 days ago

Government agrees £30m bailout for rebar giant

Emergency loan to Celsa secures rebar supplies to construction
5 days ago

Plans go in for 2,200-home Oxfordshire garden village

Sustainable scheme will also include new schools and manufacturing space
6 days ago

Winvic raids Graham Construction for civils boss

Rob Cook joins as civils and infrastructure director at Winvic
6 days ago

Contractor services