Skip to main content


The Civil Engineering industry remains heavily reliant on diesel to power vehicles and heavy machinery. Earthworks, cut, and fill operations are energy-intensive, particularly when ground conditions are wet and mucky. Hydrogen-powered vehicles are still in an early stage of development, and electric vehicles struggle for enough reserve battery to complete a full shift and are slow to recharge. Getting mains power connection can be slow and costly for shorter duration contracts, so diesel generators remain the fallback for the industry.

There is a lot of interest and enthusiasm within civil engineering to become greener and carbon neutral, but progress will be slow until such time as the technology catches up with the energy demands of the industry. Fleet vehicles like cars and small vans are easier to convert to electric for office staff because they recharge while parked. The limited public charging infrastructure in rural areas remains a barrier to switching staff to electric vehicles if they are working on some of our more remote sites.


Engaging with the Supply Chain School has been extremely valuable for Wills Bros Civil Engineering Ltd in bringing companies across the built environment towards the common goal of becoming more sustainable and achieving net-zero. It has been refreshing and comforting to know that every company is facing the same challenges that Wills Bros Civil Engineering Ltd is, and it has been by sharing these challenges that innovative solutions are emerging.

Personally, attending or promoting attendance at any of the Supply Chain School’s events has the benefit of standardizing a minimum level of knowledge of a topic across the management team. This is particularly useful for filling knowledge gaps when training new members of staff.


  • Assessments – The assessments are a useful point of reflection on where Wills Bros Civil Engineering Ltd is currently and help identify knowledge gaps in areas where the business could benefit from knowing more.
  • Action Plan – The action plan provides the stepping stones and progress markers on where Wills Bros Civil Engineering Ltd is currently and where the company wants to get to.
  • E-learning modules – The Supply Chain School offers a huge variety of e-learning materials across a wide range of topics. There is something there to educate and inform people at every level of experience, from graduate right up to senior management. Sustainability is a fast-moving topic, so it’s useful to have access to a free-to-use resource to stay in touch. The FIR Ambassador modules were extremely useful in helping Will Bros Civil Engineering Ltd to build on their existing knowledge and skills and learning about how best to embed these within the organisation to encourage a culture of Fairness Inclusion and Respect. The modules are well structured and easy to understand.

Value gained and Future Proofing

Being part of the school ensures that Wills Bros Civil Engineering Ltd remains at the cutting edge of what is happening in sustainability as well as gaining an increased understanding of the sustainability drivers of other organisations including those of Wills Bros Civil Engineering Ltd clients.

The company has also found it very valuable and beneficial that key clients in the built environment sector, such as National Highways, have utilized the school as a tool for training up their supply chain. In the future, Wills Bros Civil Engineering Ltd can see more major clients choosing the Supply Chain School to develop their supply chain towards their environmental and quality objectives. The website could also be used to deliver client-level inductions to their supply chain rather than incurring the cost of developing a new system from scratch.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, Wills Bros Civil Engineering Ltd had started giving back to the school by delivering face-to-face training to companies in Scotland based on its own industry experiences. The company is looking forward to doing more of that now that the economy has fully reopened.


Read more about SCS School and its learning courses here.