Understanding The Design-Build Contracting System

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A type of project delivery system, design-build involves a single team of professionals who work under contract to provide construction and design services for an owner of the contract.  This design-build system, although complicated sounding, is a straightforward alternative to a traditional design, bid, and build a system where the construction and design services are separately divided between a contractor and a designer.  Instead of needing to negotiate separate contracts for both designer and contractor, the design-build system allows prospective clients to negotiate a single contract for both teams of professionals. If anticipating a home renovation or another type of renovation project, working with a design-build team may be a formidable alternative to traditional renovation solutions.  

Understanding the design-build system

The design-build system is considered a more cost-efficient and faster system than a traditional building system. Many businesses are utilizing design-build systems to save time and money on various projects. The most successful design-build projects focus on delivering objectives that essentially define the projects in question:

  • Defining the overall scope of the project, including the work assigned to the team leaders and their team members.  
  • Have a plan that defines the type of success desired for the project.
  • Ensure the project owner is capable of making immediate decisions when appropriate.
  • Employ professional contractors and designers who remain committed to bringing the design-build project to life.  

Although a guideline, many of the most successful design-build projects fill most of the previously mentioned guidelines. The key to a successful design-build project is making sure everyone is on the same page while ensuring the management aspects of the project are well maintained.

Tips for a successfully managed design-build project

Starting a design-build project is not as difficult as it may seem. It takes a serious effort to take a design-build project from mere blueprints to a fully realized existence. Fortunately, here are tips that prospective design-build project owners can keep in mind before getting started.  

Defining the project scope from the beginning accomplishes two things about any prospective design-build project. First, it clearly assigns specific roles to specific members of the project, such as assigning design duties to the designers of the team. The second thing that defining scope accomplishes is ensuring there is a clear plan in place before any funds are exchanged between parties. It is important to maintain concrete plans about the design-build project, which ensures the project will avoid issues from start to finish.  

Figuring out what is a success means to the entire project also works to help keep realistic goals for a design-build project. In this context, success can mean the results of the attainable goals that each member of the project can reach. For example, completing flooring for an entire office might help set the stage for installing flooring into another part of the building, since the project has already been successfully completed. If the design-build team sees that one part of the project has been successfully done, they will have the drive to reach the other project milestones in the allotted time needed for completion.  

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