Our Approach to Preconstruction Services
We take an integrated approach to preconstruction, this approach engages a team comprised of the Client, Architect, Designers, Consultants, Construction Manager and Subcontractors at the time of conception.
The central goal is to deliver the best value while meeting the Client’s objectives without sacrificing the level of quality or schedule desired by the Client. The Team does not work to meet or achieve the Client’s budget, but to maximize the Client’s budget through the integration of solutions provided by subject matter experts during design development.
This process is intended to assemble a qualified construction team to compliment the Client, Architect, Designers and Consultants in order to reduce the overall project duration, eliminate potential cost overruns and to avoid the typical post-bid Value Engineering phase that can result in redesign costs, schedule delays and a perceived degradation of quality.
Our Preconstruction Process
- Establishing the Contractor Team
- Understanding Our Clients Objectives
- Team Communication and Collaboration
- Proactive Community Engagement
- Construction Documents & Guaranteed Maximum Price
1. Establishing the Contractor Team
We will appoint a preconstruction lead to the project, the lead will serve as the Client’s point of contact throughout preconstruction. The preconstruction lead will be assigned to the project based on their individual experience with the Client’s desired project and business outcomes.
The preconstruction lead will engage project executives, project managers, superintendents and other internal resources to assist in evaluating project logistics, schedule, safety, constructability, etc. With an understanding of our Client’s desired outcomes we will solicit the help of several major subcontractors. The subcontractors will be selected based upon their experience with similar projects, financial stability and workforce availability.
The limited number of subcontractors available to complete large-scale projects in the geography may cause project delays or cost overruns due to lack of availability. Engaging subcontractors early in the process will not only assist with identifying potential solutions early that bring value, but will help secure major subcontractors for the project and mitigate the risk of schedule delays and budget overruns.
2. Understanding our Client’s Objectives
At this point the Team structure is relatively linear and the Client has engaged an Architect who, similarly to the Construction Manager engaging subcontractors, has engaged designers and consultants to participate on the team.
Prior to the meeting, the Team may wish to visit the project site and review preliminary information such as a Phase 1 ESA, schematics and historical data. Together in an off-site location, the Team would meet and the Client would begin the meeting by sharing project specific goals and business objectives.
The linear structure should encourage an open dialogue and collaborative atmosphere, the meeting should take place prior to design development, so that the conversation is focused on solutions to the Client’s desired project and business outcomes that could be incorporated in the design.
The early dialogue within the Team should help streamline the design development. The Construction Manager and Subcontractors may be able to recommend solutions that they believe bring value that were incorporated in past projects and may help maximize the project budget, allowing for funds to be allocated to other Client desired outcomes.
3. Team Communication and Collaboration
Regular communication within the Team will be necessary throughout design development, this should not be limited to monthly meetings, but a sense of teamwork and collaboration should be instilled throughout the Team. The Architect, Client and Construction Manager’s preconstruction lead should dialogue regularly regarding solutions throughout design development.
Monthly, the entire Team should hold off-site meetings to evaluate the current design, budget and schedule. The design should be reviewed for constructability, material availability, schedule impacts and budget. Potential solutions that bring value should be discussed during this meeting. The Team may decide that it would be beneficial to engage additional subcontractors or consultants in order to help refine the project budget, schedule and to develop new solutions.
The regular review of the design, budget and schedule provide the Client with an opportunity to not only evaluate the design, but the cost and schedule associated with the design. The Construction Managers and Subcontractors can provide solutions to address construability concerns, material procurement issues, budget, and schedule while the Client, Architect, Designers and Consultants have the ability to troubleshoot the solutions real-time. The regular communication and collaborative approach saves time on the backend, mitigates budget issues, and reduces in the field RFIs and changes.
4. Proactive Community Engagement
Involving the jurisdiction and community early during design development is essential to expediting approvals and maintaining the project schedule and budget. At appropriate regular intervals the Client, Architect and Construction Manager should engage the jurisdiction and community regarding the current status of the project and design.
It may be beneficial to leverage the relationships that our Team’s subcontractors may maintain with the jurisdiction and community, they may have a good gauge on preferences and concerns that can be addressed in the design in order reduce approval delays, and changes in the field.
This helps to avoid surprises while seeking jurisdiction approvals and potential community concerns. Our subcontractors are local and engaged within their community, their input and involvement will also benefit the Team’s interaction with the jurisdiction and community.
5. Construction Documents and Guaranteed Maximum Price
Within two months of preconstruction and design development the major mechanical, electrical and structural systems, “the core”, for the project should be identified. Major materials should have been evaluated for availability and the overall constructability of the project should be addressed. Since the core documents will be further developed than the interior/skin documents, the Team can begin to release certain bid packages (i.e. foundations, earthwork, etc.) or procure long lead material packages (i.e. elevators, steel).
At the time of 90% core and 70% interior/skin construction documents, “the bid set of documents”, the Team should be able to finalize the overall project budget and schedule, identify any final solutions and place the project out to bid. The Guaranteed Maximum Price (GMP) will incorporate the final subcontractor and vendor pricing for the project.
With the involvement of major subcontractors early in preconstruction, expedited core construction documents and the procurement of long lead materials, a GMP can be established earlier than normal. The incorporation of solutions in the construction documents prevents budget overruns and eliminates the need for a Value Engineering phase.