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Process And Project Systems Construction Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Construction
Wordcount: 5083 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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Influential Govt reports presented by Latham (Latham 1994) and Egan (Egan 1998) which stressed the need of change in construction industry, improving current practices and processes covering the lifecycle of the project. Despite various initiatives the industry still lags behind and demands of end users remain far from being achieved. The construction industry being a process based industry (Halpin 1993); Kagioglou et al. (1998) point out that these issues are related to process, and not product (Goulding and Alshawi 2002). On the said guidelines efforts are being carried out by standardizing the working processes, defining responsibilities not in just construction phase but from inception to post completion.

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The report aims to find out advantages and disadvantages of moving towards ‘Generic Design and Construction Process Protocol’ in the context of CTG project. For the purpose evaluation the current processes and sub processes in CTG are mapped using firstly by RIBA plan of work revised 2007 version incorporating single stage design build contract; later the same processes are mapped by using Process Protocol. An effort has been made to apply 8 principles of Process Protocol to CTG project.

1.1 Introduction

Construction is a process based industry (Halpin 1993).

1.2 Scope of the GTC Project:

The brief shows that the Department for Business Innovation and Skills (client) needs a high-tech office complex (CTG) to house world class super computers for nuclear design staff. Selected site for the project is in Liverpool, Uk. As per the statistics: Total Building Cost: £ 50,000,000, Project Size: 20,000 sqm, Built Up Area: 10,000,000 sqft The activities that are involved to carried out the end result are; Pre-design/Planning Activities, Design Activities, Construction Activities and Operation / Maintenance Activities.

1.3 Project Objectives of CTG:

Achieving following objectives is crucial for the success of CTG project, 1) Design-to achieve balance in safety, security efficiency, lifecycle costs and working conditions. 2) Accessibility-To achieve compliance with all state requirements. 3) Aesthetics-to generate excitement and enthusiasm in new staff recruits.4) Cost effectiveness-to achieve cost certainty. 5) Energy- efficiency as electricity used annually is: 7,000 KWh. 6) Security-to make sure that the world class facility to construct and test super computers is under an extremely secured environment. 7) Sustainability-To achieve environmental goals using recyclable materials and overcoming concerns in terms of water and power. 8) Quality to achieve quality in terms of design, function and service provided. 9) Time-to achieve completion of the project within two years, the time given by the client. Throughout the process mapping it has been taken care that these objectives are being achieved. Though through use of Process Protocol it was very easy to see in the process map that these objectives are being satisfied but through process mapping of CTG through RIBA it was not.

1.4 Project and Processes in Construction and in CTG:


The project can be defined as a temporary endeavour undertaken to create a

unique product (PMBOK).


The process has been defined in number of ways and with perspectives, Hammer defines process as a “related group of tasks that together create a result of value to a customer” (Lecture Notes,2010). However (Koskela 2000) argues production processes, need to be analysed not only as transformations but also as flows and as value generation (Koskela 2000).

2. CHAPTER -2 RIBA Plan of work for Mapping a Process in CTG (from contructors point of view): (RIBA 2007; plan of work stages)

2.1 The reason for choosing RIBA Plan of work for Mapping:

RIBA plan of work identifies the steps through which any construction project must pass (Hughes 2001), also it describes a logical sequence of action and describes duties of various parties at according to various stages of the project (Wilkinson and Gupta 2005). RIBA plan of work is widely used framework by the construction industry in UK and the updated 2007 plan incorporates various procurement practices (design build in CTG case) and risk management (Phillips,2008).

2.2 Introduction to RIBA plan of work:

In an attempt to standardise the project process RIBA first introduced plan of work in 1963. The plan helps in organizing complete process in a sequence with required overlap where necessary. It starts right from appraisal stage through construction till end use, this process is divided into key work stages, depending upon the procurement method sequence of work stages may change and may overlap. RIBA 2007 plan of work stages are as follows:


a. Stage A – Appraisal

b. Stage B – Design Brief


c. Stage C – Concept

d. Stage D – Design Development

e. Stage E – Technical Design


f. Stage F – Production Information

Sub Stage F1 – Acquiring necessary approvals, preparing details of production for tendering.

Sub Stage F2 –

g. Stage G – Tender Documentation

h. Stage H – Tender Action

Sub Stage H1 – Identification of potential contractors, consultants and suppliers.

Sub Stage H2 – Evaluating tenders and awarding contracts to the selected.


i. Stage J – Mobilization

j. Stage K – Construction to practical completion


k. Stage L – Post practical completion

Sub Stage L1 – ensuring product delivered according to specification, and carrying out final inspections.

Sub Stage L2 – Review overall project performance, and the feedback provided by the end user.

RIBA plan of work of single stage tender for Design and Build contract.

Fig :RIBA Plan of Work for Design and Build contract, Single Stage Tender, (www.architcture.com)

2.3 Mapping the Process in CTG, using RIBA plan of work (from the Constructors point of view)

Stage A – Appraisal / Inception for CTG:

Department for technology and skills (owner) appointed a cross functional teams to identify the client’s needs and objectives, and possible constraints. Understanding the client’s nature of business setting the requirements; safety, security, efficiency, lifecycle cost, working conditions, aesthetics, and future expansion needs (technological & physical) Activities or Tasks: Identify procurement type (Single stage Design & Build contract)

Stage B – Feasibility of CTG:

Cross functional team and client’s representatives prepare a project outline as per the client’s requirement to meet the project objectives. Carrying out feasibility studies of the project from technical, functional and financial point of view. Activities or Tasks; As per project requirements study rules regulation, site conditions, neighbourhood surveys, market research, planning, costing, engage specialist consultant/s (computer expert)

Stage C – Concept / Outline Proposal of CTG: Parties involved: Design team, QS, engineers, specialist. Purpose of stage: Clarify clients ideas, suggesting or advising him better alternatives, giving client idea about the future developments in the project. Activities or Tasks:

Stage D – Design and Planning for the CTG: Parties involved: Design team and specialist contractor for check buildability of design, QS, IT consultant. Purpose of stage: Activities or Tasks:

Stage G – Tender Documentation and Bill of Quantities: Parties involved: Design team, QS, and client representative. Purpose of stage:

Stage E – Detail Design for CTG: Parties involved: Specialist design firm, QS, specialist contractor and client representative. Purpose of stage:

Stage H – Tender Action for CTG: Parties involved: a cross functional team, engineers, QS, design team, contractors, client representatives. Purpose of stage: Identify contractors to carry out the project. Activities or Tasks: Holding pretender briefing for prospective contractors on the project for putting forward expectation of client and clearing doubts of them. H1: Evaluation and identification of contractors to carry out CTG project. H2: contractors giving feedback / suggestions on tender or project to the client.

Stage F – Production Information: Parties involved: Architect, QS, specialist contractor, and engineers. Purpose of stage: Getting ready for onsite production and last gateway to make major changes in design. Activities or Tasks: finalizing the design and related specifications, obtaining the required permissions, detail costing and scheduling.

Stage J – Mobilization for CTG: Parties involved: Main contractor, sub contractors. Purpose of stage: gathering required resources to start the work on site. Activities or Tasks: Site preparation (clearing, fencing, establishing water/electricity, site office, residential facility for workers, health and safety unit). Preparing site conditions to commence the construction.

Stage K – Construction to Practical Completion of CTG: Parties involved: Main contractor, sub contractors, architect, QS, engineers, client representatives. Purpose of stage: Execute on site operations as per planned. Activities or Tasks : carrying out construction works till practical completion of CTG building.

Stage L – Post Practical Completion: Parties involved: Client representatives, contractor, sub contractor, QS, architect, engineers. Purpose of stage: Handing over of CTG facility completing all obligations. Activities or Tasks: clearing the site of any left behind materials, rectifying any defects, rechecking the facilities provided, and settling the accounts with client and sub contractor/suppliers,

Stage M – Feedback from CTG: Parties involved: Client representatives, employees working in CTG, sub contractors, supply chain. Purpose of stage: analyse the throughout project performance and learn from it (making of learning organization) Activities or Tasks: preparing reports evaluating delivered performances against planned. Checking whether project meets its objectives and client requirements.

3. Chapter – 3 The Process Protocol

3.1 Introduction to Process Protocol:

In an attempt

Process Protocol is process-driven model of the design and construction process, which is primarily based on ‘best practice’ manufacturing new product development (NPD) (Kagioglou, Cooper et al. 1999).

Process Protocol consists of following ten phases covering life cycle of the project:

a. Pre Project Stage: This stage relates to understanding the client and business needs. It also emphasises on issues such as need for … This stage consist of following phases: 1) Phase 0- Demonstrating the need 2) Phase 1- Conception of need 3) Phase 2- Outline feasibility 4) Phase 3- Substantive feasibility study and outline financial authority.

b. Pre Construction Stage: This stage consist of following phases 1) Phase 4- Outline conceptual design 2) Phase 5- Full conceptual design 3) Phase 6- Production design, procurement and full financial authority

c. Construction Stage: This stage predominantly focuses on two phases 1) Phase 7- Production information 2) Phase 8- Construction

d. Post Construction Stage: Phase 9- Operation and maintenance

3.2. Mapping the Process in CTG using Process Protocol:

The computer aided software Microsoft Visio is used to draw Process Protocol maps, which is used to map the processes in CTG. The map includes activities carried out by cross functional team appointed by CTG which has carried out preliminary project work (phase0-5) and further (phase 6-9) activities undertaken by G & C Ltd (appendix ). Hence phases (6-9) have been considered for mapping the sub processes. (appendix )

3.3 Application of Eight Key Principles of Process Protocol in CTG:

Whole Project View: CTG to house high tech computers for nuclear design staff, hence issues such as balance safety, security, working conditions along with lifecycle cost, sustainability, and need for flexibility to address advancement in technology need to be considered throughout the four stages of project to accomplish desired outcomes of the CTG

Progressive Design Fixity: The phase review involves discussions, meetings, brainstorming sessions to review about accomplished work, this stage could contribute significantly in progressively fixing or finding design solutions also help in predicting the construction works and upcoming issues.

A Consistent Process: Process protocol provides a standard approach to performance measurement, evaluation, and control will facilitate the process of continual improvement in design and construction which may benefit the future projects of CTG undertaken by G & C Ltd.

Stakeholder Involvement / Teamwork: As the value is determined by the customer, involvement of CTG representatives, employees who would be using the CTG should be involved in the design process along with other stakeholders such as municipal council, planning authority, defence committee, environmental dept, local community, fire and safety dept, international community need to be involved to have timely communication, foster team working, and building trust. Such involvement would reduce design alteration, rework failure to do so could lead to considerable budget escalation.

Co-ordination: Addressing the fragmentation issue raised by Latham (1994), effective coordination between G & C Ltd, sub contractor, suppliers, other specialist is important for improving overall productivity in CTG. Activity zones in PP help in achieving it through process manager represents the responsibility of each and every activity so it is easy to co-ordinate people for each particular activity.

Feedback: process protocol helps in getting feedbacks in two ways : 1) Phase review: It records and update the project experiences throughout the process and inform next/later phases whether to increase or decrease resources next phase of CTG 2) Legacy archive: it records, documents the experiences throughout the process which aid in continual improvement in future projects of CTG and G & C Ltd.

Process flexibility & Customizable process: It enables to bring in flexibility according to the objectives of CTG, issues such as security, sustainability could be added while some irrelevant processes could be deleted.

3.4 Activity Zones in CTG: activity zones are multifunctional representing structured set of tasks and processes which support and guide works towards common objective. At the same time earlier identification and involvement of concerned parties throughout the lifecycle process of CTG contributes significantly to success (Kagioglou, Cooper et al. 1998)

Development Management: is responsible for creating and maintaining business focus among CTG representatives, contractors, financers, other stakeholders, and G&C Ltd. (Cooper, Aouad et al. 2005)

Project Management: is an agent of the development management activity zone and is responsible for effective implementation of CTG project. This activity zone involves project management professionals of G&C Ltd, and client representatives.

Resource Management:Includes planning, co-ordination, procurement and monitoring of all financial, human and material resources in CTG. It involves (Development Management establishes the overall budget)

Design Management: is responsible for design process and business case of CTG and its project brief into an appropriate product definition. Involving G&C Ltd, suppliers of materials/components, sub contractors, cross functional design team, representatives from production, facility, development, project management and health and safety, statutory and legal management activity zones.

Production Management: The activities all that are related to the execution of the building on the site, this activity zone effectively communicates with the other zones during this execution period (Cooper, Aouad et al. 2005).

Facility management: Issues concerning the facilities eg. servers, computer systems during the project are dealt in this activity zone.

Health and safety, Statutory and Legal Management: is responsible for the identification, consideration, and management of all regulatory, statutory and environmental aspects of CTG project.

Process Management: develops and operationalises process protocol. It is responsible for planning and monitoring each phase in CTG.

Change Management: is responsible for effectively communicating changes to all relevant activity zones for development and legacy archive in CTG.

3.4.1 Introduction of Sustainability Management in Activity Zones:

The built environment contribute significantly to the climate change and health of environment through the materials used, decisions about site, electricity and water usage, and landscape surroundings (Younger, Morrow-Almeida et al. 2008) they go on further to suggest the built environment components may mitigate climate change, promote adaptation, and improve public health. SMAZ was developed first in the form of a table (Khalfan et. al., 2003) and then further refined into an activity zone within the Process Protocol, implementing it in the same format (Shelbourn, Bouchlaghem et al. 2006). Sustainability being one of the main objectives in CTG introduction of SMAZ could help in achieving it.

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3.5 Deliverables in CTG

4. Chapter – 4 (Potential advantages and disadvantages of moving towards Process Protocol)

4.1.1 Critical Appraisal of Current methods of working RIBA plan of work and Process Protocol

The RIBA plan of work is looked as design and management framework considering architect in the lead role (Osmani, Glass et al. 2008). It perceives construction process from design team/s point of view hence it restricts from being generic enough for application of complex and large construction works such as CTG. Shortcomings of the plan in terms of activity zones, phase reviews, legal archive etc. were noticed while mapping the process for CTG. While Process Protocol presents a generic implementation guidelines.(Kagioglou, Cooper et al. 1998) it can be applied in a flexible manner across construction projects, teams and client needs with benefits being clearly measured(Tzortzopoulos, Sexton et al. 2005).

RIBA plan of work represents a logical sequence of events and his linear fashion of management could not accommodate the concurrent working practice in construction projects (Learning package 3).

4.3 Advantages of moving towards Process Protocol:

a. Stakeholders Involvement: In a large and complex project such as CTG involving number of professionals from different disciplines (architect, engineers, contractors, QS ) makes it essential to know whom they are and would be working with in the later stages of the project, this builds team work, trust, brings in transparency consequently reducing chances of stalemates and litigations. Also extending it to the employees of CTG which would be ultimately can contribute significantly to the success of project.

b. Whole Process view and Progressive Design Fixity via Stage gate Approach:

Process Protocol and RIBA suggest to look at the project from pre project, pre -construction, construction and post completion phases deviating from traditional methods where pre project and post completion phases received negligible attention. Design fixity via stage gate approach enables continuous planning and review procedures throughout the project (Cooper, Aouad et al. 2005)

c. Phase Reviews: Reviewing the output after each phase before getting on with the subsequent phase helps in gathering feedback which is useful for making future decisions or to make appropriate resources available. They provide a good learning experience. RIBA plan of work lacks this characteristic of process protocol.

d. Legacy Archive: This is another feature of Process protocol lacking in RIBA. Throughout the project huge amount of information is generated, legacy archive helps in storing and making it available when required. As (Aouad, Hinks et al. 1998) state “the legacy archive ensures that best practice is captured and re-used” which would benefit during the project and post project to G & C Ltd.

Disadvantages of moving towards Process Protocol:

There are very few disadvantages of mapping the process through process protocol which are: 1) The use of PP proves too complex and unnecessary for small construction project (single house) where mapping of such depth is not required, not many parties are involved. 2) The awareness of such software at this stage in market is very low, not many companies in practice use or know how to use it, which put limitations if its use. 3) Like RIBA revised plan PP lacks special provision for various contracting methods, tendering process. 4) Too much detailing involved in each phase where not so important activity may get undue weight age which can be misleading.

5. Chapter – 5 (Key production activities in CTG, identifying value adding and non value adding activities)

5.1 Introduction:

In recent years production is viewed from transformation view and flow view these two major aspects, which many argue should be synthesized into a new theoretical view on construction (Koskela 1999). The production in CTG can be analyzed as waste and value

Key Production Activities in CTG:

a. Effective Planning:

Making optimum use of the available resources. 2) Required specialist and material / products (pre fabricated components) are made available at right time. 3) keeping enough buffer periods between activities. 4) Managing overlaps using the principles of concurrent engineering. 5) Use of environmentally friendly materials, techniques are used which would benefit the environment and building in long run. 6) Review physical, financial progress, monitoring and controlling it. 7) Breakdown the work packages for managing the project.

b. Cost Controlling during construction:

Forecast the budget for executing the CTG project. 2) Estimate costs for key as well as small work packages. 3) Regular audits to check expenditure committed and needed to complete the works.

c. Coordinating and Communicating


5.2 Value adding activities in CTG

Value is generated through a process of negotiation between customer ends and means (Ballard and Howell 1998). One of the ways in which value can be added is by increasing the function and at the same time keeping cost same (Egbu, 2009).

G & C have undertaken the value management from winning the contract through the lifecycle of the project.

Capturing requirements in clearly defining objectives. 2) Checking track record using competitive tenders in selecting sub contractors and suppliers. 3) Clear allocation of responsibilities and risks to avoid any confusion and litigation in the future. 4) Planning effectively and efficiently so at no point work is halted due to any reason. 5) Keeping contingency plan for works and cost eg. 6) Using JIT for very expensive high tech computers and servers to avoid double handling and damage. 7) green architecture concepts to reduce energy consumption in building (appendix) 8) Use of photovoltaic cells, Bloom’s Energy Server (appendix) to reduce dependence on external supply of electricity. 9) Methods such as rainwater harvesting to be used, treated water (from water treatment plants) to be used to cool down servers, gardening. 9) Excavated soil to be used to create landscape which will provide zero waste. 10) suspended ceilings to be used to accommodate heavy electrical wiring. 11) CTG hold 40 hour workshop for its employees on value management.

5.3 Wasteful activities in CTG

Waste is anything that creates no value for the owner/end-user (CTG), it is something

designers, constructors and clients want to eliminate because it creates no value for the

customer and yet it is a cost to them (Mossman, 2009). Despite the best efforts and utmost precautions taken by G & C there are likely to be some wastes or factors leading to it.

1) Waste of time due to miscommunication. 2) Non working days such as national holidays ( eg. 3rd May), union strikes 3) Untimely events such as rain, storm could stop the work. 4) Incorrect offsite manufacturing order which mismatches onsite component. 5) Excess of material lying on site consumes space, resources, chances of damage/theft 6) incorrect drawings for production could cost huge financially, rework and then manufacturing could cause time delays.

5.4 Efficiency of Identified Production Activity

5.5 Tools and Principles Used for Value Adding and reducing Wasteful Activities

Material Requirement Planning:

In a complex project as CTG, involving number work packages requires huge quantity and various types of materials and products at necessary stages of construction. It avoids excessive (unnecessary) stack of inventory; by controlling the flow of inventory it optimizes the utilization of labour and machines used in the project (Waller 2003).

Last Planner

Lean production:

Principles of lean production such as just in time which focuses on eliminating waste and producing or making available just when needed. Eliminating waste would help in driving up the overall quality of CTG and procuring just on time would help in reducing excess inventory save space in city surroundings of Liverpool. =7AIBx

6. Chapter – 6 (Conclusion and Recommendation)


Aouad, G., J. Hinks, et al. (1998). “An IT map for a generic design and construction process protocol.” Journal of Construction Procurement 4(1): 132-151.

Ballard, G. and G. Howell (1998). What kind of production is construction.

Cooper, R., G. Aouad, et al. (2005). Process management in design and construction, Wiley-Blackwell.

Egan, J. (1998). “Rethinking Construction (the Egan Report).” Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions, HMSO.

Goulding, J. and M. Alshawi (2002). “Generic and specific IT training: a process protocol model for construction.” Construction Management and Economics 20(6): 493-505.

Halpin, D. (1993). “Process-based research to meet the international challenge.” Journal of construction engineering and management 119(3): 415-425.

Hughes, W. (2001). “Evaluating plans of work.” Engineering Construction and Architectural Management 8(4): 272-283.

Kagioglou, M., R. Cooper, et al. (1998). “A generic guide to the design and construction process protocol.”

Kagioglou, M., R. Cooper, et al. (1999). Re-engineering the UK construction industry: The process protocol.

Kagioglou, M., R. Cooper, et al. (1998). Cross-industry learning: the development of a generic design and construction process based on stage/gate new product development processes found in the manufacturing industry.

Koskela, L. (1999). Management of production in construction: a theoretical view, Citeseer.

Koskela, L. (2000). “An exploration towards a production theory and its application to construction.” VTT PUBLICATIONS.

Latham, S. (1994). “Constructing the Team: The Latham Report.” HMSO, London.

Osmani, M., J. Glass, et al. (2008). “Architects’ perspectives on construction waste reduction by design.” Waste management 28(7): 1147-1158.

Shelbourn, M., D. Bouchlaghem, et al. (2006). “Managing knowledge in the context of sustainable construction.” ITcon 11: 57-71.

Tzortzopoulos, P., M. Sexton, et al. (2005). “Process models implementation in the construction industry: a literature synthesis.” Engineering Construction and Architectural Management 12(5): 470.

Waller, D. (2003). Operations management: a supply chain approach, International Thomson Business Press.

Wilkinson, S. and S. Gupta (2005). “The Adaptability of the RIBA Plan of Work with the Design and Build Procurement Option.” Construction Information Quarterly 7(1): 6-9.

Younger, M., H. Morrow-Almeida, et al. (2008). “The Built Environment, Climate Change, and Health.” Am J Prev Med 35(5).

Mossman, A. (2009). “Creating value: a sufficient way to eliminate waste in lean design

and lean production”. Lean Construction Journal, 13-23.




Query and Assumption Sheet:



Type of a Contract

Stage of the Project

Design and Build (Single Stage)

Pre Construction stage including detail Design

Appendix : Process Mapping in CTG using RIBA Plan of Work

Appendix : Process Mapping in CTG using Process Protocol

Bloom’s Energy Server (appendix). it’s a new invention that generate electricity Built with patented solid oxide fuel cell technology, Bloom’s Energy Server is a new class of distributed power generator, producing clean, reliable, affordable electricity at the site


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