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Robert Barbour, Group Data and Insights Director for Travis Perkins plc, joins GS1 UK board to aid standardisation of construction data

London, 09 November 2023 - GS1 UK has announced that Robert Barbour, group Data and Insights Director for Travis Perkins plc, has been appointed to the supervisory board as a non-executive director.

A high-impact leader committed to changing the culture surrounding the use of data in construction, Robert will help GS1 UK’s senior leadership team develop and refine blueprints for agreements and standards implementation across the industry.

As group Data and Insights Director for a leading partner to the construction industry and the UK’s leading distributor of building materials to trade customers, Robert is responsible for managing Travis Perkins plc’s data capability.

Since joining Travis Perkins plc in 2017, he has overseen data engineering, analytics engineering, data science and data governance within the groups data function, establishing a group-wide data capability enabled by technology, skills and education.

Before joining Travis Perkins plc, Robert was in senior management at Accenture, where he developed his data-focused career through a number of pivotal roles in large-scale, global transformation projects across the UK, Europe, Asia and Africa, spanning a wide range of sectors, including Government, communications, high tech and banking.

He is a BCS Fellow passionate about using data for good in the construction industry and strives to bridge the gap between data and business by empowering colleagues with data literacy through data apprenticeships and training.

Robert’s insights and guidance will be at the heart of GS1 UK’s strategy for collaborating with key stakeholders to support digitalisation, improve efficiency, safety, traceability and reduce costs through the implementation of interoperable data standards.

He will play a crucial role in raising awareness of how GS1 standards can address both the key issues of today, and those of tomorrow, by enabling organisations to seamlessly capture, maintain and share accurate data on buildings, equipment and materials.

This will be essential if the UK construction industry is to adapt to new legislative demands, such as the Building Safety Act 2022, and build a more sustainable future by adopting a standardised approach to environmental, social and governance.

Commenting on his appointment to the board, Robert said: “I am pleased to be joining the GS1 UK supervisory board, along with being a voice for the construction industry. The construction sector has a real opportunity to embrace digital data standardisation and learn from more digitally mature sectors. I am very purpose-driven, with a focus on using data for good, intending to make a positive impact on building safety, traceability, transparency, trust and ESG.

“Interoperable, standardised and trusted data will also help our e-2-e supply chains unlock further opportunities through the use of AI, blockchain and supply chain digital twins.”

Chris Tyas OBE, chair of GS1 UK, said: “Robert’s appointment reflects the pivotal strides our organisation has made in broadening our reach within the construction sector. His passion for quality data and expertise will be of great value as we help the industry solve some of the critical challenges they cannot solve alone. Especially in areas where consumer need, legislation and industry efficiencies intersect.

“Interoperability will be critical for facilitating effective communication, collaboration, and data exchange among the diverse parties involved in a building's lifecycle. Our role in this space is becoming ever more relevant as many of the requirements set out by Building Safety Act 2022 and the ‘golden thread of data’ come into force.”


Notes to editors

For further information or requests for interviews, contact Alex Cox: 07464 946 769; alexander.cox@gs1uk.org.

About GS1 UK

Whether online, in store or in a hospital, the common language of GS1 global standards is helping our community of more than 58,000 organisations across the UK to uniquely identify, describe and track anything, creating greater trust in data for everyone.

From product barcodes to patient wristbands, GS1 standards have been transforming the way we work and live for nearly 50 years.

GS1 UK is one of 116 neutral and independent GS1 organisations operating worldwide.

About Travis Perkins PLC

Travis Perkins plc is a leading partner to the construction industry and the UK’s leading distributor of building materials to trade customers. The Group operates market leading businesses, including Travis Perkins Builders’ Merchants, Toolstation and a number of specialists in the civils market (Keyline), heating and ventilation (BSS) and drylining and insulation (CCF), and many more.

With annual revenues of £5bn, the Group employs nearly 20,000 colleagues across the UK, but also in France and Benelux through Toolstation. The company has a proud heritage that spans over 200 years.

For more information, please visit www.travisperkinsplc.co.uk