Choosing project delivery methods

The delivery method chosen for a particular project should be moulded to fit the needs of the project and the principal. It is essential that the principal identify the specific objectives of the project that can be affected by the chosen delivery method.

Generally these objectives include:

  • Timing
    - how quickly is the project required?
    Alliancing and construction management are often used where speed is required (but may cost more and benefit from an experienced principal).

  • Control over design
    – how much control over design does the principal want to retain? Construct only contracts give a good deal of control; design and construct contracts give more control over design details to the contractor.

  • Experience of the principal
    – a principal with little experience usually should tend toward construct only or design and construct, as these models give greater time and price certainty. They also usually require less input from the principal. A principal with greater experience should be more comfortable in considering more complicated, intensive procurement models such as alliancing or EPCM.

  • Other stakeholders
    – how important is it to engage with and manage the project stakeholders such as the community and statutory agencies?

  • Project complexity
    – some models are probably only value for money if the project is complex.

Often the results of this analysis are put into a risk matrix, which weights and scores each model against the key project objectives. From there, a principal can decide on the most suitable method of procurement for the project.

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Updated 14 July 2014