Social performance

Where BAM can improve

Despite BAM’s continuing effort to improve safety on its projects, the company deeply regrets the sad loss of two subcontractor employees in 2015 as results of industrial accidents. BAM is aiming for zero accidents, regardless of the severity of the accidents or the numbers of hours worked. The challenge for a future that appears impossible but will be made possible through personal commitment. We are in the process to generate a genuine and sustainable safety leadership culture across the senior management of the Royal BAM Group.

Health and safety

Royal BAM Group feels responsible for all people involved in or affected by the activities of the Group. This includes BAM’s employees, clients, designers, partners, suppliers, subcontractors, buyers and the general public.


In order to effectively monitor its safety performance, BAM records statistics of the following groups:

  • BAM employees (all employees with an employment contract with the company);
  • Hired employees (all employees from the leasing sector, who work for a BAM company, excluding hired BAM employees);
  • Subcontractors (all employees of the subcontractor and the employees of their subcontractors, employees hired by subcontractors and self-employed persons);
  • Consortium / joint venture (all BAM employees, leasing employees, self-employed persons and employees of subcontractors and their subcontractors who are working for BAM);
  • Other / third parties (principal, supervisor, inspector, supplier, visitor and so forth).

As part of the SAA each operating company is awarded a score on a scale from 0 to 100. The SAA audit report includes recommendations for further improvement. The average of all the audit results provides a picture of safety performance within BAM as a whole. Safety awareness in 2015, as measured through the SAA, increased to 75.4 (2014: 74.2), which exceeded the 2015 target of 75.0.

The IF for BAM is determined by the total number of industrial serious accidents leading to absence from work, per million hours worked on construction sites. In 2015 the IF decreased to 4.5 (2014: 5.0), which is below the 2015 target of 5.0. The number of fatal and serious accidents (BAM employees, hired, subcontractors’ employees, other) decreased from 205 in 2014 to 153 in total in 2015.


It stands to reason that managers’ attitude and behaviour are crucial for better safety results. Therefore in 2015 BAM continued the Making BAM a Safer Place campaign, which started in 2013. On 13 October 2015 the global BAM Safety Day took place, which paid attention to health and safety with the global theme ‘in shape to start’. The main aim of In Shape to Start is for the team or individual to assess the activities and working environment prior to starting work each shift and additionally before starting each different work activity during that day. The assessment should not replace normal risk assessments. It should include not only the task to be performed but also the work environment and those who may be affected.

In short, In Shape to Start is:

  • Involvement of the workforce;
  • An opportunity for workers to seek improvements ahead of commencing work activities;
  • A means of pausing to re-evaluate hazards, risks and control measures;
  • A means of reinforcing original risk assessments and method statements;
  • Part of a wider health and safety improvement programme.

In 2015 BAM and TNO have done more work towards employee resilience through the ‘B-Alert’ programme. BAM also continued with implementation of the programmes Hein® in the Netherlands and Beyond Zero and Zero Harm in Ireland and the United Kingdom to encourage and strengthen a culture of openness.

Furthermore, it is apparent that fewer accidents take place when clients include safety in requirements for contract selection and contract execution. In the Netherlands in 2015, BAM, together with other large construction companies and clients, committed to making industry-wide agreements to improve safety by signing a Governance Code Safety in Construction. By doing so, they aim to improve the industry’s safety culture and performance, strengthen the supply chain and promote standardisation, education and knowledge exchange. Therefore in 2015 BAM participated in selected Governance Code meetings, workgroups and were presentations held at the Dutch ‘Bouwcampus’ for the construction industry. Chairman’s of the workers council, active in construction and dredging in the Netherlands, were involved by BAM about the progress on implementation of the Governance Code. BAM also endorsed the Zero Accidents Network, that focuses on management commitment of the participating companies. Furthermore in 2015, BAM chaired the health and safety working group of ENCORD, which worked on sharing and learning, standardisation of safety indicators and research and development. BAM also revised its General Terms and Conditions for Purchasing and Subcontracting to include safety performance management of subcontractors.


BAM actively focuses on health concerns for its employees, such as sun protection and exposure to asbestos and quartz dust. Over the past years, BAM sees a decreasing trend in its absenteeism figures.

Business conduct and transparency

In 2013, the BAM Code of Conduct was modernised and aligned to new regulations such as the UK Bribery Act. All new BAM employees are required to sign a declaration of adherence to this Code as part of their employment agreement with BAM. An e-learning tool has been launched in 2014 to train and remind employees of these BAM values and standards. The training was introduced for Dutch operating companies first. By the end of 2015 3,765 employees in the Netherlands received an invitation to follow the online course, which was successfully completed by 69 per cent of these employees. All invitees receive periodical reminders until they have completed the training successfully. In 2015 BAM worked on different translations of the course for introduction in its other home countries in 2016. The training will be obliged for all new BAM employees. 

During 2015 Dutch media paid attention to one particular incident, where an area director of a BAM-subsidiary was involved, who had withheld financial information about a project from management. In this particular case all BAM procedures were applied directly and correctly, well before it was mentioned in the media.
As a consequence the area director lost his position at BAM.

In 2015 no legal actions were taken for anti-competitive behaviour, anti-trust and monopoly practices. In addition, there have been no material instances of corruption or of non-compliance with laws and regulations.

Corruption index

The Corruption Perception Index (CPI) is calculated annually by Transparency International, which focuses on strict implementation of the UN Convention against Corruption. The CPI classifies countries according to their perceived level of corruption on a scale from 0 to 100. BAM achieves the majority of its turnover in countries with a Corruption Perception Index Score higher than 80, i.e. in countries with a very low risk of corruption.

Responsible tax

Corporate income tax, taxes on wages, social security contributions, and VAT are also considered relevant taxes in relation to the turnover that BAM makes in the areas where it works. These taxes provide good comparability in the Netherlands, the rest of Europe, and the rest of the world for BAM. Under these categories BAM’s taxes amount to 831.1 million. Relative to BAM’s turnover, the share of taxes paid deviates most from the share of turnover in the Netherlands. Here BAM’s share of taxes is relatively high compared to turnover.


Employee recruitment, development and retention

Back in Shape

Its employees are BAM’s most important asset. A reduction in jobs as part of the Back in Shape programme appears to contradict this. BAM is aware of this apparent contradiction yet it is important to safeguard BAM’s performance from an economic point of view. BAM supports sustainable employee development with its endeavours to help employees involved find suitable new work. This is laid down in a social plan.

Employees who have been made redundant have an additional option. The social plan offers:

  1. Outplacement (help with going from work to work, employee receives compensation);
  2. Immediate termination of employment contract (employee receives compensation).

BAM’s social side is clearly visible in the plan, particularly in the safety net scheme: if, for instance, someone has chosen the outplacement path and receives a new six-month employment contract, and this contract is not extended due to reasons beyond the responsibilities of the employee involved, he or she can fall back on BAM’s mobility process. The safety net means that one initially receives help with finding a new job, and if one is not successful, he or she will get financial compensation. The duration of this safety net scheme is maximum 24 months.

The active aspect signifies a pro-active attitude, both of the employer and the employee, and this element was lacking in the former social plan. This aspect is mainly expressed in the work-to-work programme for both parties, which entails assisting employees whose positions have become redundant towards a new challenge. For this BAM has established BAM Link, BAM’s mobility centre, where people are assigned a personal mobility advisor who helps finding another job, whether at BAM or outside the organisation. BAM is focusing on this process more than before, which is a huge investment in terms of time, money and energy. An active approach of the employee who has been made redundant is always rewarded.


During 2015 the Dutch construction daily Cobouw reported that the share of female employees in the Dutch construction industry has not increased over the last years. The construction industry is still considered to be the least emancipated industry in the Netherlands. Of all main contractors in the Netherlands, BAM employs the largest share of women: 14 per cent are women.

For all home countries except for Belgium, the percentage of female employees increased or remained at the same level.


Annual total compensation by country

In 2015 the rounded ratios for annual total compensation of BAM’s highest paid individual to the average annual total compensation for all employees remained at the same level as in 2014, except for Germany. In Germany the ratio decreased from seven to six, which means that the average salary increased more than the salary increase of the highest paid individual. The ratio of percentage increased in the Netherlands, and decreased in Belgium and Germany. 

The relatively high ratio for BAM’s international business can be explained by the fact that Dutch management members work together with local workforce, thereby explaining  the difference in salary standards.

Employee engagement

During 2015 approximately 130 colleagues, with a Group-wide representation, participated in four sessions called the ‘Edge Journey - Growing Together’ to develop the strategic agenda 2016-2020. External speakers were invited to present their businesses and to challenge BAM staff to come up with innovative business concepts that BAM might bring to the market in the coming years. Many of the innovative ideas were based on expansion of services over the life-cycle of projects and using data to ultimately serve the end-user in its need for smart solutions.


Local community engagement

In 2015, local community engagement programmes, that measure and manage the impact of building projects on the local environment, were implemented at 33 per cent of BAM’s operations. These were initiatives as part of existing programmes, such as the Considerate Constructors Scheme (CCS), Bewuste Bouwers and Making TIME for Communities, as well as unique initiatives of engagement managers on projects and site-specific sponsoring or charity work. 

Considerate Constructors Scheme 

CCS fosters good communication with the local community and promotes professionalism on building sites. Both BAM Construct UK and BAM Nuttall in the United Kingdom are associate members of the CCS. Construction sites registered under the CCS scheme are monitored to ensure that they comply with the Code of Considerate Practice developed to promote good practice, going beyond legal requirements.

Bewuste Bouwers

Based on the success of the UK Scheme, BAM was one of the companies that introduced the scheme Bewuste Bouwers in the Netherlands in 2009. After five years of participation, Bewuste Bouwers decided to involve BAM in further roll-out of the scheme. During 2015, 78 sites were registered under the scheme in the Netherlands (2014: 82). 

Making TIME for Communities

BAM Construct UK continued its commitment to targeting the social issues highlighted in the Making TIME for Communities strategy. For the third year running, BAM Construct UK’s community initiatives were award winning, with the Manchester Football Academy project collecting a hat-trick of community awards. BAM Construct UK uses the London Benchmarking Model to quantitatively measure its community investment. In 2015 BAM Construct UK estimated that 90 per cent of all community engagement activities were monitored and given a monetary value. In 2015, €766,400 was invested in to the communities surrounding BAM Construct UK’s projects, which benefitted over 20,000 people.

Additionally in 2015, BAM Construct UK introduced an apprentice-tracking tool to document the number of young people gaining expertise on its sites. To date, 155 apprentices have gained over 11,500 days of site experience on BAM projects.


BAM uses a tool to measure supplier performance. During project preparation, implementation and follow-up, the tool assesses suppliers against the themes safety, quality, total cost, logistics and engineering and process. Operating companies have the opportunity to add any specific criteria. On a scale of 1 to 4, each supplier has to score at least 3 for each criterion. In 2015 a total of 3,679 supplier performance assessments were carried out. 

Human rights

On 26 May 2015, a delegation of BWI and trade union organisations FNVBouw STICC visited the BAM project site of Hoog Catharijne in Utrecht, the Netherlands. No anomalies were detected in any of the areas that have been challenged by the BWI. A report, issued by FNVBouw confirmed this and stated that, among other things: there is an extensive safety programme on site; employment is freely chosen; there is no discrimination in employment; child labour is not used; working conditions are decent; safety representatives are chosen; and the employment relationship is established. The delegation was pleasantly surprised by the openness of the workers.