Rob Bailey is a construction director and BAM’s healthcare lead in the North West of England and North Wales. We caught up with him over Teams to find out more about him and his work in the health sector.


How did you start out in construction? 

I consider myself lucky in that from the age of 12 or 13 I was quite focused and knew that I wanted a career in construction. My first love was technical drawing and was interested in the technical and structural aspects of a building from the ground up. I started on site as soon as I left school at 16 and did day release which allowed me to gain practical skills and experience, while also continuing my studies in Civil Engineering. By the age of 20 I was managing my own construction projects which I admit was a stretch whilst juggling my studies. I have now been in the industry for over 30 years and 14 of those have been with BAM.


What health projects have you been involved in?

I have been delivering health and partnering projects for over 17 years and since I joined BAM I have undertaken a number of projects including the new Urgent Care and Trauma Centre at Aintree University Hospital, the Sub-Regional Neonatal Intensive Care Centre (SuRNICC) and several other projects at Glan Clwyd Hospital. Today I am responsible for a number of health projects including the construction of the James Potter building at Salford Royal NHS Trust. Once complete it will house their new Acute Receiving Centre (ARC), enabling the Trust to become the major trauma centre for Greater Manchester. 

BAM team at Aintree Hospital


What do you think you bring to health projects?

I excel at working openly and collaboratively with all stakeholders to create a one team culture. I view myself as very hands on and adopt a proactive approach to leadership to ensure that we liaise effectively with the design and client team to identify issues early on and address them in the best way possible. I want clients to know that if they have a problem at any point in the project, they can come to me and I will resolve it.


What are you most proud of?

I am most proud of the long term relationships we have developed with local NHS Trusts. For example, we have worked with the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board since 2007 and have undertaken several schemes for them including a cancer treatment centre. neo-natal intensive care and mental health facilities. At the Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust we have a ten year relationship, which started with the refurbishment of the Emergency Department and continues today. These relationships are based on trust and credibility. Our clients know that when we say we will do something, we will do it. BAM delivers on what it promises.

James Potter building, Salford Royal NHS Trust

What do you think is the basis for a successful project?

Collaboration is key to the success of a project. This starts even before the bid process  where we work with the client to understand their needs, aspirations, and pressure points. What it is that keeps them up at night. This develops through the bid period and directly after appointment where we then determine together how we can respond to these goals and challenges, while ensuring that patient care can be maintained throughout the scheme. This careful planning pays dividends and we have never had a stoppage or impacted hospital operations. Our approach is different to some contractors. At BAM our proposed team is identified and involved from day one, starting with the bid team and proposed project lead. This team remains constant throughout to help support our health client’s through business case and funding approval and into eventual construction ensuring continuity of delivery and foster strong relationships. 


What does BAM bring to North West health market?

BAM never adopts a one size fits all approach and we work to create a tailor-made solution that meets our health client’s needs. We bring an in-depth understanding of how to address the unique challenges posed by healthcare schemes, while also ensuring that each Trust’s aspirations are met. To help us find the right solution, the team can draw on the experience and learning of local, national, and European colleagues. This means clients benefit from the latest best practice in healthcare design, construction and operations and can be certain that schemes will perform as expected over their lifetime.

Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Glan Glwyd Hospital

How are we helping clients to adopt modern methods of construction (MMC) and reduce carbon?

We recognise that many of our clients are on a learning curve when it comes to topics such a modern methods of construction and Net Zero Carbon .  We are taking a leading approach to simplify this and declutter the conflicting terminology for our clients. We are providing a road map to net zero employing a fabric first approach. Designing for decarbonisation and use of parametric design tools allows us to explore more options early optimising the design so our clients can make informed decisions for their estates. This approach will lead to reduced energy demands and better whole life cycle outcomes. Part of these embodied carbon assessments includes consideration of off site construction, but it has to be right for the project and respond to our clients’ needs now and for the future. There is a government target from NHSEI that all new build projects be 70% MMC and this will be the gateway to funding. There are many ways of realising this goal, each with their own benefits and risks. BAM’s collaborative approach and technical knowhow has already helped current healthcare clients secure funding for projects and will enable future clients to best meet these and their own aspirations. Giving them confidence that their chosen solution will deliver as predicted.

What can BAM’s health sector clients expect from us in the future?

BAM is developing a number of innovative solutions for the health sector. This includes a componentised digital platform solution, which will allow clients to create a customised asset from a standard kit of parts. The asset can be configured to meet customer requirements in terms of whole life costs, net zero, offsite and quality.  We are also looking at the value that we can create for clients through the use of automation and AI.

Rob Bailey
Rob Bailey
Construction Director
Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Glan Glwyd Hospital