Project management header
products page

Construction projects – part 8 - Project requirements



Project requirements

Many projects are divided into stages and are often named in differing ways.
Some common ones for the construction industry, and brief descriptions, might be:

Briefing

Allows the client to clarify what is required and the level of any budget limits.
The Project Manager and others are appointed.
Plans are formulated.
Costs and quality are considered.
The Project Board and management committees can be set up.
A project brief is agreed with the client and user and initial staffing, recruitment and training.
Designers will be heavily involved in assessment of many aspects of the project.
For civil engineering projects the user input may be even more important.
The possibility for influencing costs is greatest at this stage.
Scope for reducing costs during the construction phases is limited.

Designing

Approval is required from the authorities involved and the client by completing the project brief, determining the construction layout, methods of construction and estimated costs.
Designers may include architects, quantity surveyors and other specialists.

Tendering

See the section covering Tendering.

Construction

To construct the building to cost, time and quality specifications.

Commissioning

To ensure that works have been completed as per the contract and that everything works as it should.
To provide a record of the construction, operating instructions and suitable training.

Contractor retention (in use repairs)

One of the final stages of a project is the handover after a commissioning exercise.
The product is then in use by the client or ultimate user, for example, heating and ventilation system or a building.
It is a common practice to hold back some of the cost (e.g. 10%) to make sure that any faults found in the product (over the next 4 to 6 month period) are rectified.
This is usually the client withholding a sum of money from the appropriate contractor as an incentive to make good repairs.

The scope and the programme for the handover, as well as the current status, information required and relevant responsibilities, should be clear and agreed with those it concerns.
The principle of the handover could equally apply at the end of a stage or phase of activity or the completion of a part of the project which can be commissioned separately.

Each phase will require different skill sets of personnel.

Non - PRINCE2 information