Among the many methods in construction delivery, there are three that are the most used and recommended in construction. These three methods are the design-bid-build method, the design-build method, and construction management. There are other methods that have also been used by many construction companies, methods like fast-track construction, multiple prime contractors, and other alternatives. Choosing the best method for your company would be based on a lot of requirements, and you may have to use one of the alternative methods rather than one of the three most common methods.
The design-bid-build delivery method is a traditional one. The main flow of this process would be to, first, have the design created by architects and engineers, and then to advertise the plan to solicit bids from construction firms. Once you have chosen the winning bid, all parties involved in the project can then move on to build the project. The winning firm becomes the contractor of the project. It will be responsible for the completion of the project using its labor force, sub-contractors, or a combination of the resources. While there are several advantages to this method, there are also disadvantages that can put off an owner to use it. It’s that the design-bid-build method takes a long time to complete, and that the designers and builders can sometimes be at contrasting points of view with the builder regarding to the building of what has been designed.
The design-build delivery method is where the owner will select a contractor to create the design and build the project. This is an ideal method for people and companies who wants to save time and have more control on the details of the project. From the very start of the project, the designers, engineers, and builders will be working together, and all parties will get to agree and understand on the details. What is critical with this method is that the owner and the builders should a clear picture of the final decision and design before the construction starts. There are also many advantages and disadvantages with this method, most of which concerns the project costs and the fast pace of the process.
Construction management, compared to the two previous methods stated above, is relatively new. The method shows a process wherein the owner hires a construction manager during the design phase of the project. The construction manager will see to it that the design team will make a design that is agreeable and understandable to all parties. The terms for a design to be approved by the construction manager usually considers the project costs and the details of the design. The construction manager will see to it that the project is within reasonable costs and that the builders are able to understand every detail of the design.
In choosing among these three methods, we only have to look at who will be held liable for the project and who will have the most control in the process. The design-build delivery method usually wins out where control and liability is involved. But not all owners have the same factors and circumstances to make this choice. Advantages and disadvantages have to be weighed before an owner will choose among the delivery methods of construction.