Paul Raby, group HR director, Balfour Beatty
Paul Creber, September 17, 2018
Raby has been Balfour Beatty’s group HR director for more than a decade, having been appointed in 2005
Balfour Beatty is the UK’s largest contractor, employing around 28,000 people across three continents. Over the past three years Raby has been integral to the Build to Last transformation programme that has seen Balfour Beatty restored to financial strength.
He is responsible for developing and implementing the group’s people strategy (including leadership development, talent management, capability development, reward and succession), ensuring that policies are aligned to support the business to achieve its vision and goals through attracting and developing the people to deliver on iconic projects around the world. Raby is also responsible for the health, safety, environment and sustainability function in the UK.
During his time as group HR director Balfour Beatty has undergone significant changes in scale and strategy. Raby has been instrumental in ensuring that the HR team has been able to deliver the necessary support to the business in each phase.
Following his appointment in 2005 Balfour Beatty was in a phase of rapid growth, as it changed from being a circa £4 billion UK-focused construction business to becoming a circa £12billion international infrastructure group by 2010.
The financial crisis in the late-2000s led to Balfour Beatty facing very challenging financial circumstances as the business was affected by a range of issues in a number of profit warnings, senior management and board changes, divestments and merger discussions.
Since 2015 with a new CEO, new chairman and other changes to the executive committee, Raby has provided continuity within the business while playing a major part in delivering the Build to Last transformation programme. Build to Last is delivering sustainable, measurable change across the group and has made great progress to return the group’s financial strength by focusing and engaging all Balfour Beatty’s people on four goals: Lean, Expert, Trusted and Safe. Raby has led the HR function during this period of change, which has delivered around £1 billion of shareholder value in just three years.
He has a keen interest in pensions and social value activities and has acted as a trustee of a number of large pension schemes. He is also a trustee of the Balfour Beatty Charitable Foundation: Building Better Futures.
Prior to joining Balfour Beatty Raby worked in a number of HR roles with Alstom, Massey-Ferguson and United Biscuits.