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Podcast: Explore the Benefits of Integrated Project Delivery

The session begins with a deep dive into the world of construction projects, specifically addressing the issue of change orders. The discussion pivots around how the construction process unfolds when confronted with these change orders.

They delve into the concept of a “zero change order environment.” While the term itself is self-explanatory, the nuances come into play when considering the reasons behind these change orders. Change orders can arise from multiple sources, each with its distinct ramifications. For instance, if the driving force behind the change order is a mere coordination glitch, there’s no added benefit or value brought to the table. However, when the impetus for the change order comes from the project’s owner or is attributed to a genuine alteration in the project’s scope, then its relevance is entirely different. Here, they advocate for a comprehensive review of the change order. This involves evaluating its merits, challenging its aspects if necessary, and ensuring the entire process is approached with fairness and integrity.

The podcast addressed an apprehension that subcontractors, often termed “subs,” grapple with in the construction industry. The concern is straightforward: after providing invaluable information for design bids, the subs fear that the project owner might exploit this knowledge to solicit the lowest possible price from competing parties. This, they assert, not only undermines the hard work and expertise of the subs but also erodes the bedrock of trust upon which such professional relationships stand. Such actions, they emphasize, are detrimental to fostering a trust-based partnership.

Kevin, bringing his extensive experience to the fore, stresses the invaluable benefits of incorporating team members right from the inception of a project. Such early integration, he opines, ensures that the entire team is on the same page regarding the project’s methodology. He juxtaposes this with the pitfalls of the “design bid” method, a more traditional approach. In the design bid scenario, there are often unforeseen nuances and details in the project drawings that can escape attention. When these details are overlooked, it usually culminates in financial ramifications, often with some stakeholders bearing the brunt of the losses. To drive home this point, Kevin narrates a compelling anecdote from one of his previous projects. In this narrative, the focal point is a project that entailed the demolition of a part of an existing facility. This demolition posed a significant challenge: it interfered directly with an egress path, a vital pathway meant for safe and unhindered exit during emergencies. Given the site’s constraints and the non-negotiable safety protocols, the situation called for innovative thinking. Kevin, in collaboration with the contractors, eventually devised a win-win solution. The resolution involved constructing protected overhead galleyways at regular intervals, ensuring smooth operational flow without sidelining safety.

Glossary:

  1. Integrated Project Delivery (IPD): A way of doing construction projects where everyone involved works together from the start. They all share the risks and benefits.
  2. GPS Earthwork Takeoffs: Using GPS technology to measure and plan the amount of dirt and ground materials needed for construction.

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