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The Construction Contract Administration Knowledge Community (CCA) has been established to help our members better understand the issues, actions and resultant impact of the decisions required in this often neglected part of Project Delivery. It is our goal to provide clear answers to issues of concern to the Institute’s membership and share case studies and best practices. We further hope to provide guidance and direction in developing guidelines for new and evolving approaches to Project Delivery as well as guidance in the continuing education of our emerging young professionals.

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Contract Document sales at AIA

  • 1.  Contract Document sales at AIA

    Posted 10-17-2012 13:31
    This message has been cross posted to the following Discussion Forums: Practice Management Member Conversations and Construction Contract Administration .
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    During an AIA Contract Documents update phone call yesterday I learned something that shouldn't surprise me really...but it did. The number one selling AIA Contract Document....the Change Order. It accounts for 14% of total sales. So for last year....that means we roughly sold 112,000 change order forms. If anyone wonders why CA is important to have as a focus within the Institute, there is one compelling reason in my opinion. Helping to educate our members how to best avoid these being necessary may hurt the bottom line a bit...but it is worth the risk and investment of time! ------------------------------------------- James Rains FAIA Rains Studio, PA Ramseur NC -------------------------------------------
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  • 2.  RE:Contract Document sales at AIA

    Posted 10-18-2012 08:48
    Hello James.
    I would think: us architects preparing more complete drawings and specifications and better coordination between disciplines.  I remember having "pin-up" sessions where ALL the project documents were plotted and pinned up on walls in our office and ALL project team members were invited to attend a 2-day long coordination event.  That always yielded insights and good and effective coordination.  Just a thought.

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    Rand Soellner AIA
    Architect/Owner/Principal
    Home Architects
    Cashiers NC
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  • 3.  RE:Contract Document sales at AIA

    Posted 10-18-2012 11:26
    Most projects dicate only a one-time document for any given issue, such as the Contract Agreement.  In contrast, change orders can sometimes range up to the ridiculous in quantity.

    Discovery of the unknown on renovation/remodel projects can certainly generate changes. But as a commercial general contractor, I suggest that well upwards of 90% of the change orders are the result of 1) an owner changing their mind, or 2) not understanding what they were getting until they see it (or both); the latter generally being inexperienced owners.   -------------------------------------------

    R. Scott Sandquist AIA
    Vice President
    Sandquist Construction
    Lincoln NE
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  • 4.  RE:Contract Document sales at AIA

    Posted 10-19-2012 15:52

    The G701 Form only allows the AIA to adequately track the sales of the document; I propose we must know WHY. Knowing WHY would go a long way in understanding how an architect can more efficiently administer the construction contract on a project, in turn informing the AIA how it can adequately educate and increase the knowledge base for those performing these services.

    Why are they being used? We must first know where the Change Order originates...The Owner? The Contractor? The Architect? These can be more adequately attributed by...The Owner Requested Changes, The Contractor Unveiling Unforeseen Conditions, or The Architect Errors and Omissions.

    Let's first consider Errors and Omissions - certainly attributed to a Design Team (or Architect who holds the contract) - which in the insurance world amounts to our negligence in the preparation of construction document. Scott provided a look back to the way things used to be in terms of coordination and Dennis indicated the severity of the issue in claims against architects. This is certainly a contentious issue, but certainly one that the AIA can help solve through education.

    HOWEVER...we must also consider when The Owner and The Contractor generate Change Orders.

    Renovation and Rehabilitation projects have become more and more important in both the public and private sector in this economy. Unforeseen Conditions can arise on these projects when items are uncovered in walls or in new construction when excavation begins and abandoned underground utilities are revealed. These are not the fault of the architect and our Professional Liability Insurance understands that.

    Consider a competitive Design-Bid-Build project that bids 2-5% under budget. For a $10 mil project, this can leave $200,000-$500,000 on the table! Thoughtful design and coordinated construction documents are the first step in delivering a good project to the client, and at times can lead to great bids under budget. Then consider the value that can be added back to the project through Owner Requested Changes when we may hear "upgrade the finishes here" and "add this extension there."

    When we think about The Owner and The Contractor generating Change Orders, things aren't all that bad, right?!

    Construction documents are not perfect and neither are the architects who draft them. Before we list ourselves as the reason for the sale of 112,000 change order forms, let's realize there are two other parties in standard project delivery that can generate a change order...and let's find a way to track so we know how to better educate those performing construction contract administration.

    Disclaimer: these examples are based on work with design-bid-build projects for state agencies (specifically, higher ed). They are not intended to be exhaustive in their explanation, but nobody wants to read an 8 page thread. In addition, these comments are intended to spark more discussion, hopefully they will...


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    Matthew Hart Assoc. AIA
    Intern
    IPG, Incorporated
    Valdosta GA
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