Contractors going ‘above and beyond’ on social value

More than a decade after the Social Value Act was passed into law, building contractors and suppliers now realise they must offer far beyond just a ‘box ticking exercise’ to win new work. Tony McDonough reports

Frank Rogers Building Contractors
Frank Rogers Building Contractors puts social value at the top of its agenda


There was a time when bidding for work from a public body or housing association was mainly about two things – price and quality.

They remain important, but in 2012 the UK Parliament passed the Social Value Act, which has changed the dynamic dramatically. Businesses are now required to demonstrate how they can provide societal benefits beyond just delivering a job on time and within budget.

The Act states that all public bodies must consider how what they are proposing to buy might improve economic, social and environmental wellbeing. This requirement has transformed the process of public procurement.

Social value is traditionally applied as part of a community, local, or regional contract. A local authority commissioning a regeneration project may require the companies bidding for the work to state what social benefits they would offer to the area.

It can manifest in a number of ways. It can be offering employment or apprenticeships to local people, volunteering on community improvement projects, engaging with local people and groups and demonstrating that materials are ethically sourced.

Rachel Walker, head of marketing and communications at Liverpool-based Frank Rogers Building Contractors, told LBN the firm now goes “above and beyond” when it comes to providing social value.

With its headquarters in Clubmoor, Frank Rogers was established more than half a century ago. It offers expertise in construction, new-build, refurbishment, planned maintenance and repairs and fire protection.

In late May it was named Contractor of the Year at Northern Housing Awards. As a medium-sized enterprise, the firm has demonstrated “exceptional capabilities” that rival those of larger industry players.

“We have ongoing relationships with housing associations, universities or local authorities and then we will tender for the work. We have expanded in recent times and we now have offices in Newcastle and Manchester,” said Rachel.

“Some of the tenders can take a few weeks and others a few months or longer, depending on the scale of the job.

“Social Value is now huge compared to what it used to be, particularly in the construction sector. You have a lot of frameworks that come through councils and social value is very important to them.

“There will be other jobs where you will only be required to meet a minimum criteria. But Frank Rogers is a well established firm that will always look to do more than that because we think social value is really important.

“So we will go that much further to offer extra value and that could mean offering to train apprentices or making a donation to a preferred charity. We are pro-active in our approach and will always offer more than the minimum.

In April Frank Rogers secured a place on the Communities & Housing Investment Consortium (CHIC) Healthy Homes framework.

FR Greener Solutions, a division of Frank Rogers, said  the appointment reflects its commitment to delivering high quality decarbonisation and building safety services in collaboration with CHIC.

CHIC is a collaborative, not-for-profit, member-owned and governed consortium that delivers compliant procurement services and commercial support to its members in partnership with the supply chain.

Its members include more than 200 housing associations and local authority affordable housing landlords, all of whom are now focused on net zero.

Frank Rogers has also set up the FR Foundation that is committed to donating thousands of pounds to good causes within the communities it serves. It aims to “uplift individuals and communities” and “create a ripple effect of hope and empowerment”.

“We launched the foundation in September 2023,” added Rachel. “We pledged to donate £50,000 to local organisations to mark our 50 years of trading and we have already reached that target.

“That was donated to different charities mainly across Merseyside and some in the other areas we operate in as well.

“On top of that we will also take part in careers fairs and special days with schools and universities. We are doing another project with Plus Dane on a volunteering day in June connected to one of our projects. We will ask others in the supply chain to take part too.

“Some contracts might say we want you to provide X amounts of apprentices. Engaging with local communities close to where we are working is massively important.”

Rachel says Frank Rogers employs a widely used measurement called TOMS to assess its social value contribution. So this will put a monetary value on the hiring of an apprentice or voluntary work on a specific community project.

“It is really useful to be able to do that because it gives you an objective measure of how much social value you have delivered,” she explained.

“A lot of businesses will deliver real value and some will treat it as a box-ticking exercise and do the bare minimum. That isn’t what we do. We will always go above and beyond what is required.

“This is a family-founded business that is aware of its roots. We think it is vital we benefit the communities where we do our work.”

As part of its social value approach Frank Rogers also engages with its supply chain to encourage them to support its activities. One of those suppliers is Bootle-based windows and doors manufacturer Warwick North West.


Frank Rogers
Frank Rogers Building Contractors scoops Contractor of the Year accolade at Northern Housing Awards
Greg Johnson,
Greg Johnson, managing director of Warwick North West in Bootle. Picture by Tony McDonough


Greg Johnson, managing director of Warwick, described Frank Rogers as the “perfect customer”. He added: “They are professional to deal with, have a great reputation, do plenty of work within the city region and are great payers.”

Greg added that it has become increasingly important for businesses such as Warwick to work with companies that not only offer profitable trading relationships but also have a sense of shared values.

He explained: “They are great people, very similar to Warwick in their ethics and morals, a family run business that is generational.

“Frank (Rogers, the founder) and my grandfather were friends although they never did business together. I always remember Dean (Rogers, current managing director) saying to me after a couple of years of dealing with Warwick, he wished they had used us as a supplier a lot earlier.

READ MORE: Mersey window firm boss… ‘my baptism of fire’

“And the Frank Rogers Foundation epitomises the Rogers’ family, caring, giving, good people. The alignment with the Johnson family and Warwick is very alike, our charity partnerships are very close to our heart.

“I think that’s why we have such a strong working relationship, because we pull in the same direction and share the same principles. Genuinely I am very proud to have Frank Rogers as a customer, their custom is truly valued, I wish I had 10 more like them.

“Seeing them winning Contractor of the Year at the Northern Housing Awards came as no surprise. It was well deserved and I offer my heartfelt congratulations.”

Warwick and Frank Rogers are both committed to sustainability and finding ‘greener solutions’ for the way their businesses work.

“Frank Rogers Green Solutions is another arm to their business that Warwick aligns well with,” added Greg.

“My focus over the coming years is to drive Warwick even further with sustainability and is something I know Dean and the directors at Frank Rogers are constantly striving towards themselves.”

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