Architecture / June 26, 2018 /
Procurement refers to the process of obtaining goods and services from another for some consideration. They describe the process as being simple in theory – balancing quality, time and cost priorities, but complicated in practice by legislation, the need to achieve value for money, demonstrate accountability and coordinate consultant and contractual roles and obligations to achieve a satisfactory outcome. The procurement strategy identifies how the project is structured and establishes where responsibility for design is to be placed, how the work is to be co-ordinated, and on what price basis the contract is to be awarded. The procurement strategy also directly affects the level of risk borne by the contractor and leads to choices regarding the conditions under which the work will be executed. These risks must be appraised and managed by the contractor and has a direct impact on the price tendered by the Contractor
The choice of the architect as lead designer is a key decision on any project and will reflect the clients priorities, particularly those related to cost and quality. Clients who plan to develop high quality or landmark developments often employ high profile design practices. Indeed internationally acclaimed architects including Daniel Liebskind, Santiago Calatrava and Dublin-born Pritzker prize-winning Kevin Roche have completed projects in Dublin in the recent past. The leading Irish architectural practices are likewise normally in high demand and clients are keen to buy into their signature. High expectations are usually linked to high prices and such clients will expect to pay a premium on prestigious projects. Nevertheless, they may not be prepared to provide total carte blanche to the architect. Architects, quite naturally, may be reluctant to drop quality standards and compromise their brand to reduce costs and it may difficult for the quantity surveyor to control costs in these circumstances. In this regard Ashworth refers to a cynic who described architecture as the design of beautiful buildings that satisfy only the architect and not the client. At the other end of the cost spectrum a client may require a practical, nononsense design to accommodate a production process. Such designs are often developed by architects operating within a design and build arrangement where providing an economic design is essential to winning the contract.