Causes of Poor Information at the Pre and Post Stage of Construction

Posted on 14th February 2019

By Adeolu Adewale

Causes of Poor Information at the Pre and Post Stage of Construction Project:

Poor brief development by Clients/ Sponsors: it is often said that clients in most times do not really know what they want; they expect their designers to transform their vision and expectation for plan that give them value for their monies. Most time, clients engage the services of professionals after the business decision and brief have been developed, without properly structure project requirements process.

In most time, its create misunderstanding between the design team and client, and often time, when brief are developed base on financial benefit and returns to investors only, without much consideration to other factors, this will influence the success of that project. Also a rigid brief makes project un-realizable and waste of effort and the end, misunderstanding between the client and designers.

it also lead to misunderstanding among the project team and construction team in terms of real deliverable of the project, claims due to variation in change of scope. It has caused, lost of confidence in the parties involved in the project, increase the cost, and drain down the expected returns.

Poor communication system: the parties must communicate in a manner that they can understand each other. Design documents such as drawings, specification, work programme etc. form part of the medium of communication in construction industry.

Design and specification oversight and error, or omissions resulting from uncoordinated civil, structural, architectural, mechanical and electrical designs can result in unexpected changes orders, scope changes, and variation during construction and project delays.

Also, lack of proper recording of site minutes, poor site instruction records, causes misunderstanding and shifting of blames among the design team, poor  document review , not properly tag, can lead to contractor using wrong documents, which can cause causes rework, lost of time, and extension of time for project completion time.

Similarly, dispute may occur when an owner’s design vision of a project is not communicated effectively to the designer, perhaps  due to an owner’s inexperience ,this may result in an unrealistic project square areas, poor finishes which cannot be achieved within budget.

In-experience designers and contractors : it often happens that the professional  lack the in-depth knowledge of the project details requirement in terms of skill and  experience, inadequate site investigation, lack of planning techniques by the contractors and ability to use planning tools and technology. This leads to poor project planning, and scheduling, unrealistic completion time, and client dissatisfaction.

Architects or engineers, failure in its contractual administrative duties such as field observation, site reporting, site instructions with regards to construction defects, quality progress and conformance of work with the contract documents and evaluation of change order and contractor claims, often lead to contractors – designer faceoff ,lack of proper records, make claims becomes difficult for payment. contractor can not substantiate his claims due to lack of approved documents and architect not able to proof otherwise, give rise to client lost of money and time.

Improper project information  records :Incorrectly priced bill of quantity, errors in figures, poor specifications and description, poor project accounting coding, due to lack of understanding of the construction methodology by the quantity surveyor working for the client, may lead to budget overrun and project abandonment. Contractor overbilling often are the result of a fundamental misunderstanding of what is allowable under the terms of the contract.   Payment structure and terms not effectively captured in the contract agreement, and financial position of the client, in terms of what will complete the project, lead to delays from client, extension of time, loss and expense claims by contractors.

Contractor’s failure to coordinate its sub contractors information: occasionally much of time of site managers can be devoted to searching for missing information or reconciling inconsistencies in exchange of shop drawings, failure to provide timely response to change issues, purchasing and schedule mismanagement may impact the work of others. Factors that cause delays, inefficiency, reworks, defects and cost overrun are due to poor supply chain management and leadership.

Starting construction work prior to design completion: often times, clients are inpatient, in term of design process time, is a recipe for troubles. A complete fully coordinated set of project documents is critical to realization of a successful project from all parties’ perspectives. Incomplete design or contract documentations, e.g architectural, mechanical, structural, and electrical, can lead to poor quality deliveries, not meeting client expectation. Delays due to rework, when the electrical A/c duct is not coordinated with structural beams and slab, and contractor has casted. Lead to braking of wall and slab, reduce the strength of the building , cause building collapse, claims and extension of time, lost of rent by client due to delay in completion time, cost overrun.

Poor knowledge of labour and equipment: inadequate knowledge of contractor about the capacity, productivity, non usage of right equipment or technology, and use of skilled labour in operation of technology driven items of construction work, may lead to slow pace of work, reworks, cost overrun, lost of time, and eventually requesting for extension of time. It also leads to lost of confidence by the client in the contractor, showing his/her level of capacity.

Poor knowledge of environment factors: earthquake, level of rainwater or flooring, weather forecast information are major factors when planning construction project design and construction, it is expected of design team to have an adequate information related to natural and environmental impact of the proposed project .also of contractor to be mindful of weather condition before carrying out some construction works such as concrete casting, filling, excavation etc.

An international contractor taking a reclamation of land area project, during the pick of raining season is southern part of Nigeria, the whole laterite material was washed away by the rainfall in August 2012, and he wanted to claim damages from government, the client told him, as a contractor he is expected to have knowledge of rainfall data in that location before commencement of work, even during the pre development stage. Such claims would not be paid by government, in view of the project as Public Private Partnership project.

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