This is a core competency for both quantity surveyors and project managers that the candidate must demonstrate competence to level 3

This week, we continue our look at the competency of Procurement and Tendering (T062). This is a core competency for both quantity surveyors and project managers that the candidate must demonstrate competence to level 3.

If you recall from previous articles, assessors are trained to ask questions that ascertain candidate’s progress against the three APC competency levels:

Level 1 knowledge and understanding (‘knowing’)

Level 2 application of knowledge and understanding (‘doing’)

Level 3 reasoned advice and depth of technical knowledge (‘advising’)

The following questions are typical of those that could be reasonably expected at Final Assessment - particularly if the candidate has experience of working on projects using the construction management procurement route:

Level 1 – Describe the Construction Management procurement route – what are the key issues?

The candidate should know that the Construction Manager is essentially a consultant engaged under a secure agreement, who is paid a fee for the organisation and planning of construction work on site ensuring it is carried out in the most efficient manner. The design work is undertaken by a design team engaged by the Employer, while the construction work itself is carried out by a number of so called ‘Trade Contractors’, each of whom enters into a direct contract with the Employer.

The key issues raised by this procurement route include:

• There is no single point of responsibility related to the delivery of the project.

• There is greater role of Trade Contractors in the completion of their design work and co-ordination of their work with other packages.

• The co-ordination and management at interfaces between different trade packages is of utmost importance.

Level 2 – I note from your papers that you work for a Construction Manager – describe your company’s duties on your current project?

The Construction Manager’s roles and responsibilities go well beyond the scope of work of a typical contractor and require specialist resources for successful delivery.

The candidate would be expected to demonstrate knowledge of the following duties:

• Programming of design and construction activity, including information release programmes, approvals and reprogramming to meet overall completion dates.

• Advising on buildability construction methodologies and sequencing including assistance with the selection of materials or, in some instances, the use of prefabrication.

• Commenting on and monitoring the progress of design development.

• Advising on requirements for preconstruction works, temporary works, mock-ups and testing.

• Packaging up the works into well co-ordinated and clearly demarcated trade contracts, together with the definition of the transfer of design responsibility.

• Advising on the pre-qualification of Trade Contractors.

• Preparing and collating pre-qualification and tender documentation together with the administration and negotiation of the tender process.

• Managing, planning and controlling the work of Trade Contractors, including the administration of design approvals and inspections.

• Monitoring and reporting on overall progress, advising on issues related to trade contractor performance and forecasting the impact of design changes or disruption to the progress of the works.

• Managing financial aspects of the project, including trade contract valuations, claims and administration of contra-charges.

• Initiating action by the client and project team to mitigate delays or cost overrun.

Level 3 – A client wishes to understand the advantages of construction management as a procurement route compared with a more traditional approach – what would you advise them?

The candidate would be expected to present a response citing some of the following:

• Acceleration of the overall project programme

• Enhanced ability to incorporate change into the design

• Delayed completion of design elements, such as retail fit-out or hotel fixtures and fittings, that can be finished later without affecting the overall programme

• Involvement of specialist Trade Contractors in design and construction

• Creation of a less adversarial, problem-solving project culture

Level 3 – Can a Construction Manager be held liable if a project goes wrong?

The candidate would be expected to be familiar with the principles established in the case of Great Eastern Hotel vs. John Laing Construction and be able to comment on its implications.