New Connections: same old habits yield same old results

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It is widely accepted that the most significant unanticipated cost in most construction projects is the financial impact associated with delays.

This has led to the rise of the project manager with planning tools becoming the focus of much literature and ‘Critical Path Analysis’ becoming the buzzword of the day.

However, despite the increased focus on planning and on-site project management, the most recent Industry Performance Report suggests that over 60% of construction projects are still being delivered behind schedule.

Is this surprising? No – after all, the construction industry is notorious for delays – but what many people fail to realise is that often these delays are outside of the construction companies’ control.

Utilities are the most common cause of delay in construction projects

The British Property Federation cites Utility Connections as the single most common cause of delay in construction projects and it’s often the source of much frustration for developers, contractors and investors alike.

Given that the market for the provision of electrical connections to a Distribution Network Operator’s (DNO) system has evolved much over the past few years, what may come as a shock is that the relevant DNO is still the first point of contact for the majority of construction firms wanting to start the connection process.

In a market currently valued in excess of £500 million a year, competition is key and with the introduction of the ‘Competition in Connections Code of Practice’ there are now around 241 Independent Connection Providers and 8 Independent Distribution Network Operators (IDNOs), each capable of providing electricity connections.

Why use a specialist utility connection provider?

  • Save Money: Achieve a saving of up to 40% on connection fees allowing you to increase your profit margin or divert funds to other aspects of the project.
  • Receive Asset Value: Allowing you to offset your initial capital outlay with a lump sum payment, from the IDNO, for your completed electricity substation/network.
  • Expedite Time Frames: Allowing you to complete projects ahead of schedule – reducing stress levels and giving you more time for commissioning.
  • Increase Service Delivery: Providing you with a more bespoke service and really taking the time to understand your requirements and properly guide you through the complexities of the connection process.
  • Better Project Management: Keep all service connections under one roof with many ICPs also offering gas and water connection services. Providing you with one point of contact for all your utility services needs.

With competition in connections consistently improving, alternative connection providers undoubtedly offer an attractive option when looking to source connection works. However, the complexity of the market and outdated work practices means that most Site/Project Managers still utilise the DNO, disillusioned by the connection process and overcome with workload.

As Henry Ford said, “if you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always got” and what we’ve got at the minute is a construction industry renowned for project failure and delays.

Embracing competition in connections will go some way to shaking the construction industry’s reputation for delays, providing a viable alternative to the DNO that allows firms to make significant savings while improving and accelerating service delivery.

Amber Energy enables the process and improves the service delivery by reviewing options, taking away the stress associated with connection projects and allowing you to capitalise on the increased competition. With a proven record in delivering electricity, water and gas connections we source the very best partners for you and your client, utilising our industry knowledge to achieve best value and deliver on time.

Why use Amber Energy?

• We offer a no obligation quote and free impartial advice.

• We undertake a full tender process to identify the lowest cost providers.

• We expedite industry process and project manage the job to ensure it is completed on time.

• We sense check supply capacity requirements ensuring you only pay for the capacity you will use.

• We deal directly with the council to overcome traffic management issues.

• We offer innovative solutions where capacity is not available, identifying the best point of connection to ensure your site goes live as quickly as possible.

• We process all applications and deal with the paperwork, allowing you to focus on other key deliverables.

• We deal with all aspects of metering and utilise our supplier relationships to achieve the very best supply contract prices.

So why not get in touch today and see how Amber Energy can help you?