Sheffield-based 3Squared has been awarded a major contract working on High Speed Two (HS2), generating new jobs within the South Yorkshire region. The railway technology company are working with one of HS2’s direct contractors, Skanska Costain STRABAG JV (SCS JV), who are delivering the tunnelling programme for the route between London Euston up to the M25.
The three-year contract will see the company supplying its RailSmart software, alongside some bespoke modules, to form a supply chain management system, giving visibility of the complex freight supply chain, and providing live performance, cost management information and operational control data in real-time.
In April, the Government gave approval for the next stage of the HS2 project which has meant HS2 contractors now have the go ahead to start building the new low carbon, high speed railway. HS2’s Main Works Civils Contractors (MWCCs) are now leading the transition from scheme design and preparatory work, to full detailed design and construction, and this progress has unlocked a huge amounts of new contract opportunities for the construction sector.
3Squared are now working on one of an estimated 400,000 supply chain contract opportunities that are being created for UK businesses which will support thousands of jobs on site and many more around the country. This work package has meant that in a time of economic uncertainty due to the Covid-19 pandemic, 3Squared have not only managed to retain its workforce but in 2020 have expanded, creating thirteen new jobs at its head office in Sheffield, three of which were staff that have been employed following work placements or apprenticeships. The contract award has also enabled 3Squared to further strengthen its relationship with local academia as it takes on 5 placement students who are all on their final degree year with Sheffield Hallam University.
The Sheffield based firm has recently made a £250,000 investment commitment to the North by pledging its long-term allegiance to the Sheffield city region by opening its new flagship headquarters in the heart of the city. This investment triples its office space giving the company plenty of room for future growth.
HS2 Ltd’s Commercial and Supply Chain Director, David Poole, said: “HS2 will play a key role in the UK’s economic recovery following the pandemic, and this contract award is just one of many that is helping create and sustain jobs around the country. Not only can HS2 support SMEs and regional economies near Phase One of the railway between the West Midlands and London, but it is also playing a pivotal role in the Government’s wider ‘levelling up’ agenda.”
The bespoke part of the contract with SCS JV will see 3Squared develop a number of enhancements to its existing software including terminal management, cost control and supplier performance, which will support whole-life value measures across this project. These features were specified and designed by Legge Infrastructure Services, a construction and transportation strategic consultancy and the appointed rail freight logistics lead sub-contractors working on behalf of SCS JV.
Tim Jones, co-founder and Managing Director of 3Squared, said: “We are delighted to play a part in the construction of HS2, a scheme that will bring much-needed capacity to the UK rail network. The capabilities of our RailSmart platform combined with the pioneering and innovative BulkSmart enhancements, will deliver significant benefits to the project and deliver a solution that could be of benefit to the other phases of HS2, all major infrastructure projects and any bulk material suppliers.
“This contract award has not only led to the creation of new roles within 3Squared, but it has also supplemented existing job roles. We are an employer that truly believes in investing in its workforce; actively improving our own diversity and inclusivity is high on our agenda and part of our culture. We are proud of the fact that we share both HS2’s and SCSJV’s commitment to celebrating diversity.”
To date, over 2,000 UK registered companies have won work on HS2, and over 9000 jobs have been supported. It is estimated that around 95% of contract opportunities on the project will be won by UK based businesses and around two thirds of those will be small and medium sized businesses.