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What is procurement?

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Procurement is a broad term that defines the relationship between the various parties of the construction industry including architects, employers, consultants and building contractors to finance, implement, design and deliver construction and infrastructure projects. It is the process of finding and agreeing to terms and acquiring goods, services, or works from an external source, often via a tendering process. It is important for architects to have a basic understanding of the different procurement routes since architects often provide advice as to the appropriate type of procurement route. 

There are many different routes by which the design and construction of a building can be procured. The selected route should follow a strategy which fits the long-term objectives of the client's business plan. Considerations are likely to include: the scope and nature of proposed work, the level of risk, the responsibility of design, the coordination of work and the price basis of a contract. 

Procurement methodologies are often assessed against three main factors: TIME, COST and QUALITY. And it is also important to consider the methods to transfer risks, ongoing liabilities, the involvement of the employer through the design and construction phases and the employer’s ability to monitor the work of the contractor.

Four Main Routes:

  • General Contracting (Traditional)

  • Design and Build

  • Management (Construction Management and Management Contracting)

  • Collaborative / Partnering

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