Not all projects are well suited for Integrated Project Delivery (IPD). It works well on complex projects with sophisticated designers and construction managers. It works well on projects where owners with clear goals plan to take an active role early and to continue that involvement through the project. For a hands-off owner, with a simple project, IPD may not be right. Ordinary procurement strategies may be fine. In fast track, hospital projects built by experienced teams, IPD has shown its value.
Insurance problems with IPD
Integrated project teams using old forms of insurance may not get what they expect. To clarify the issues and obtain coverage to protect the IPD project, get professional advisors to engage with insurance carriers early. Make sure the insurers know how the parties work together, how that reduces the risk of common claims. Get the insurers to sculpt their offerings to suit the project. I have experience with builder’s risk, professional and general liability policies, claims and underwriters. Engage an advocate to generate non-standard coverage options.
Legal Problems with IPD
Some lawyers never will advise any clients to adopt any IPD agreements. Few of the tools in a litigator’s toolbox are well suited to solve IPD project problems. I have seen the benefits of collaborative work styles on construction projects, even as the contracts were based on old relationships. IPD contracts can be designed and adopted by Owners, Architects, Contractors and others who collaborate on intentionally allocating risks.
Competitive Pricing with IPD
Engaging trade contractors early reduces the likelihood that those subcontractors will offer the most competitive pricing. To address this issue, IPD offers several tools. All project books are open to audit. Sophisticated owners and construction managers will have a sense of the per square foot pricing in the market beyond that project. Owners considering IPD should have a plan to ensure competitive pricing from all trades, especially those brought on early.
Active ownership with IPD
Integrated Project Delivery is a process and it requires owners to be very involved. Owners on IPD projects do far more than choose the designer and contractor and pay the bills. With IPD, owners must spend more time early and participate in communicating clear project goals to the team members. Choices that would result in change orders on ordinary projects should be made earlier with IPD but once determined, these choices become set.
Non-cooperators and IPD
If construction project participants show after several opportunities to contribute, that they just will not share the goals of the team, in making solid commitments or in focusing on what is best for the project overall, they should be invited to pursue work on other, non-IPD projects.
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