This May the RCI-IIBEC Foundation announced the conclusion and release of the results from an extensive research study they conducted on the use of unit-price procurement for design and construction services. This study, titled “An Analysis of Unit-Price Procurement & Cooperative Purchasing”, was presented by Sid Hankins, F-IIBEC, RRC, AIA and treasurer of the RCI-IIBEC Foundation, and featured study coauthor Paul S. Chinowsky, professor emeritus at the University of Colorado Boulder. This study was based on many interviews done with purchasing agents, facility managers, public procurement staff, vendors and purchasing list owners.
Chinowsky cited four top-line issues from the report: access in qualification, national pricing practices, independent and professional oversight, and building code inconsistency. On pricing, Chinowsky said that a “national best price” for most of the country will be higher than a price obtained if the project was procured through a regular bidding process. In terms of selection, Chinowsky noted a lack of transparency in who can get on an approved list and what the specific criteria were for approval. He also pointed to “a heightened concern” about materials specified by suppliers in conjunction with owners that are greater than the required specifications for the project and specific to an individual supplier.
In addition, the study highlights concerns about when an independent consultant with specific expertise might be required, as well as a lack of code guidance for specific geographies during the construction phase of a building project.
In sum, Chinowsky said that the study shows the following:
Brian Pallasch, executive vice president and chief executive officer of IIBEC, discussed IIBEC’s policy recommendations drawn from the report, focusing on the independence of the design professional; public health and safety; the avoidance of single-source specifications; the importance of full and open competition; and the use of qualifications-based selection for procurement of design services.
For more information, see all of IIBEC’s resources on the procurement of design services.
Original article source: IIBEC
Learn more about International Institute of Building Enclosure Consultants (IIBEC) in their Coffee Shop Directory or visit www.iibec.org.
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